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Okoro’s 3-pointer sends Cavs past Nets

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Isaac Okoro celebrates with teammates Cedi Osman and Donovan Mitchell, right, after making the game winning shot against the Brooklyn Nets during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Thursday, March 23, 2023, in New York. The Cleveland Cavaliers won 115 - 109. (AP Photo/Noah K. Murray)

NEW YORK — Isaac Okoro hit a 3-pointer from the corner with 0.7 seconds remaining and finished with 11 points as the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Brooklyn Nets 116-114 Thursday night.

Donovan Mitchell scored 31 points, Evan Mobley had 26 points and 16 rebounds and Jarrett Allen finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds against his former team. Cleveland won for the eighth time in 10 games.

Mikal Bridges scored 32 points, Spencer Dinwiddie had 25 points and 12 assists and Joe Harris hit five 3-pointers and finished with 15 points as the Nets lost their fifth straight game.

Cleveland trailed 112-104 with 2:13 left before closing the game on a 12-2 run. Trailing by one, Mitchell missed the a second free throw that would’ve tied the game. But the ball bounced to Okoro in the corner, who drained the 3-pointer to give Cleveland the lead.

A heave from half court by Bridges at the buzzer fell short.

Bridges secured his eighth 30-plus point game as a member of the Nets through three quarters. The shooting guard had 14 points in the third quarter, and Brooklyn led 91-85 after three.

The Cavaliers rank first in the NBA in points-against per game and defensive rating, but had no answer for the Nets offense, which shot 56% in the first half. Dinwiddie had 19 points, including 11 in the second quarter, and seven assists, helping Brooklyn take a 61-60 lead into the break.

Mitchell and Bridges each scored in double figures in the first quarter, seeming to trade baskets in the early going. Mitchell scored 12 in the first, including nine in the first 2:17. Bridges had 10, helping the Nets build a 33-31 lead after one.

TIP-INS

Cleveland: Mitchell is 35 points from 10,000 for his career. … With two made 3-pointers Thursday, Garland is now four away from tying Wesley Person for eighth place on the Cavaliers’ all-time list. … Guard Raul Neto (left-hamstring tightness) missed his second straight game.

Brooklyn: Bridges is averaging 25.8 points and 5.1 rebounds per game for the Nets since joining them via trade Feb. 11. Ben Simmons (left-knee/back soreness) missed his 14th consecutive game. Vaughn said pregame Simmons has been working individually and “not with teammates.”

UP NEXT

Cavaliers: Host the Houston Rockets on Sunday.

Nets: At Miami Heat on Saturday.

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AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/nba and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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