LeBron back in South Beach when Cleveland Cavaliers visit Miami Heat

Not five, not six, not seven.

That's how many championships LeBron James predicted the Miami Heat would win when he took his talents to South Beach to play alongside Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.


James didn't win seven titles with the Heat, but he did bring two more Larry O'Brien NBA Championship Trophy's to Miami before he returned to his home in Cleveland this past offseason.

King James and the Cavaliers will close out a four-game road trip (3-0) in south Florida Monday and shoot for a fifth straight win. James, who experienced a right knee issue in Sunday's 123-108 victory over the Orlando Magic and will be re-evaluated before the game, won't be facing Bosh tonight.

Bosh is done for the season because of blood clots in his lungs.

"CB is one of the best players on their team if not the biggest key," James said. "He was always our biggest key when I was there. Myself and D-Wade, you kind of know what you were going to get out of us. When CB played great, we were unbeatable. But his health is more important than basketball. I'm happy he's doing extremely well right now. They got a lot of guys over there with championship DNA, so that's all that matters."


James has similar DNA and is leading the Cavaliers toward the top of the Eastern Conference. The Central-leading Cavs have won 10 of their last 13 games and are 24-5 since Jan. 15. In Sunday's victory over Orlando, Kyrie Irving scored a game-high 33 points on 12-of-15 shooting and made 5-of-6 3- pointers.

James ended with 21 points, 13 assists and eight rebounds, while J.R. Smith netted 25 points and sank 6-of-11 from downtown. Cleveland shot 59.2 percent for the game and scored 74 points in the second and third quarters.

Irving is averaging 37.3 ppg in his last three and recorded 57 points in Thursday's overtime win at San Antonio.

"Twelve for 15 from the field, 33 points in 34 minutes, that's a pretty good encore," Cavs coach David Blatt said of Irving's latest output.

The Cavaliers are second in the East standings - three games ahead of Toronto and Chicago - and have won 21 of the last 22 games when scoring at least 100 points. They are 35-5 when hitting the century mark in scoring this season.

Cleveland is 19-16 on the road and will host Brooklyn and Indiana next.

Cavs forwards Kevin Love (back) and Shawn Marion (hip) are questionable Monday. Love did not play Sunday and Marion hasn't played since Feb. 12.


Miami is back home for three games versus Cleveland, Portland and Denver, and went 2-1 on a recent stay in South Beach.

The Heat made a stop in Toronto on Friday and dropped a 102-92 decision, as Wade led the charge with 25 points and Goran Dragic added 18. Michael Beasley rounded out the double-digit scorers with 11 points for the Heat, who committed 20 turnovers and have alternated results the past six games.

"We didn't (play) with rhythm," Dragic said. "It was tough to come back."

Toronto entered the fourth owning a comfortable 78-63 advantage, with Miami aiding its opponents cause by committing nine third-quarter turnovers. The margin was 21 points early in the final frame when Lou Williams was fouled while shooting from beyond the arc and made all three shots for an 84-63 lead.

Wade has been on a tear the previous five games with an average of 28.0 ppg in that stretch.

The Heat are 14-18 at home this season and a half-game behind Charlotte for the eighth and final postseason spot in the East. Boston is also a half-game back of the Hornets.


Miami spoiled James' first return to AmericanAirlines Arena with a 101-91 victory on Christmas Day. Wade scored 31 points and James countered with 30 for the Cavs, who defeated the Heat, 113-93, on Feb. 11 at Quicken Loans Arena to snap an 11-game slide in this series.

The Cavs and Heat will play again April 2 at the Q.


Latest Headlines