NBA: Love, Cavs hand Suns 16th straight loss


Posted at Feb 22 2019 10:53 AM

Phoenix Suns forward Josh Jackson (20) drives to the basket against Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love (0) during the first half at Quicken Loans Arena. Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports/REUTERS

In his third game back since missing 50 games this season, Kevin Love on Thursday scored 16 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 111-98 win over the visiting Phoenix Suns.

The loss was the 16th straight for the Suns, a franchise record. The Cavaliers have now won eight straight against the Suns.

Love missed most of the first half of the season with a toe injury and has had his playing time restricted. Against the Suns, he went 6 of 13 from the field in 22 minutes, going 3 of 8 from beyond the arc and committing four turnovers.

He scored 13 points in the second quarter to help Cleveland take a 55-51 lead at halftime. Love did not play in the fourth quarter.

The Cavaliers opened up a 59-51 lead to start the third and stretched the lead to 70-60 on a Love 3-pointer.

Phoenix quickly erased the deficit, scoring 11 straight, with Kelly Oubre Jr. and Jamal Crawford connecting on back-to-back long-range jumpers to put the Suns up 71-70.

Jordan Clarkson and former Suns forward Marquese Chriss answered for Cleveland with 3-pointers on consecutive possessions to ignite a 13-1 run by the Cavs.

Besides Love, Cleveland's balanced offense had four other players score in double figures. Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. came off the bench and finished with 15 and 14 points, respectively.

Ante Zizic finished with a double-double, scoring 15 and grabbing 12 rebounds.

Cedi Osman led Cleveland with 19 points. His 25-foot jumper put the Cavs back up 10 with 7:31 to go. Nance followed with a dunk to doom any chance the Suns had of snapping their losing streak.

Cleveland recorded a season-high 34 assists, with Matthew Dellavedova finishing with 11.

Devin Booker led the Suns with 30 points. Oubre, who got his first start with the Suns since a December trade from Washington, added 23 points.

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