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LeBron is youngest to record triple-double



Published: Fri, January 21, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Record is nice, but wins matter more to James and his teammates.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- LeBron James could be in for quite a few more nights like this, just as long as the Cleveland Cavaliers win.

James had 27 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists to become the youngest player in NBA history to record a triple-double, and the Cavaliers beat the Trail Blazers 107-101 Wednesday night to send Portland to its fifth straight loss.

"I think he could go out and play for a triple-double every night and get it," Cavaliers teammate Jeff McInnis said. "But he doesn't play for that, and that's a credit to him."

Lamar Odom was 20 years and 54 days on Dec. 30, 1999, when he had one for the Los Angeles Clippers. James beat Odom's mark by 34 days.

"I just want to create an atmosphere where winning is the most important thing," James said. "It's not individual goals. I could care less about individual goals.

"I'm going out and averaging good numbers. But we're winning and I'm happy."

Triple the pleasure

James' pass to Zydrunas Ilgauskas with 1:19 left gave him 10 assists and completed the triple-double. His teammates congratulated him during a timeout a short time later, and his mother cheered him from a courtside seat.

"That was never a goal of mine to do it, but once I kept getting so close I wanted to try to get over with it," James said. "Winning this ballgame tonight, and plus getting the triple-double, it gets no better than this."

Even the Blazers were impressed.

"He's in my top 5 of all time," forward Ruben Patterson said. "He's strong and gets to the basket. He's a great leaper. So he's in my top 5."

Ilgauskas had 21 points and 11 rebounds, and the Cavaliers led by as many as 19.

Cleveland is 2-2 in the midst of a six-game road trip, with the Sacramento Kings coming up Thursday night.

Nick Van Exel had 28 points, while Damon Stoudamire had 27 for Portland, which has lost five straight.

A difference of style

When the Blazers came within 95-87 late in the game, James hit a 3-pointer to slow Portland's momentum.

"Lamar played like that -- smooth," said McInnis, a former Clippers teammate of Odom's. "He could get triple-double without you even knowing it. They're similar in that aspect, but they do it differently. (James) is aggressive, he's attacking. Lamar is kind of laid back, picking and choosing."

The Blazers were was finally home after a grueling six-game, 10-day road trip, during which they managed just one win. But even the comforts of home couldn't boost their depleted lineup.

XThursday's Cavs-Kings game was not completed in time for this edition.




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