Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 2/2/13
CLEVELAND -- Kyrie Irving was interested in sending the Cavaliers home victorious. Cleveland coach Byron Scott was interested to see how his players would respond. One night after Irving came under fire for admitting he was "disinterested" during Friday's loss at Detroit, he scored 35 points, including 13 in the game's final 2:52, and the Cavaliers stunned the Oklahoma City Thunder 115-110 Saturday. Irving made his last five shots on a variety of drives and bank shots to close out one of the league's best teams. "He's a killer, that's all I can say," Cavs reserve Mo Speights said. "I knew a little bit about him, but I never knew that. He's so nonchalant out there and then gets to anywhere you want on the court. A young player doing that in this kind of league, he's going to be special." He already is. The Thunder scored just one basket over the final 1:26 after the game was tied at 108. Kevin Durant finished with 32 points and 11 rebounds despite leaving the game temporarily with an injury, and Russell Westbrook added 28 points for Oklahoma City (35-12). Before Irving returned for the game's final 5:37, Speights fueled a Cleveland comeback. He scored eight consecutive points and 10 of 13 for the Cavs during a three-minute stretch in the fourth quarter, pulling the Cavs (14-34) ahead 94-86 before Durant and Westbrook brought the Thunder back. Speights, who had 21 points and 10 rebounds, continues to shine off the bench since the Cavs acquired him from the Memphis Grizzlies in a recent trade. Durant took a knee to the ribs while fouling Alonzo Gee on a fast break with 6:04 left in the third quarter. He remained in the game for another two minutes before checking out and heading immediately to the locker room holding his right side with the Thunder ahead 74-69. Durant returned to the bench late in the third quarter and immediately put a compression shirt under his jersey. He checked back in with 9:55 remaining and the game tied at 81. "I was good," Durant said. "I came in and played. That's all that matters." After Speights put the Cavs up by eight, the Thunder scored the game's next 11 points to take a 97-94 lead. C.J. Miles' 3-pointer tied the game, and the Cavs turned it over to Irving, who again was masterful late in the game. His biggest shot was a 3-pointer with 42 seconds left, reminiscent of the game-winner he hit at Toronto last Saturday to win the game at the buzzer. This time, Irving saw Westbrook drifting back on his heels and hit the shot that put the Cavs ahead 113-108 with 42 seconds left. "It's my responsibility as the leader of this team to do that every single night, bring the energy, bring the mental focus and be the voice out there," Irving said. "Lead on both ends of the court. That's my job." Scott has been upset with his team's effort level on multiple occasions, and he was again after Friday's dismal loss at the Palace. "We shouldn't have to keep bringing up the fact that we have to play hard, we have to bring that type of energy every single night. That should be the least of my worries," Scott said. "When we play with this type of energy, good things can happen. We beat the best team in the league tonight. If that doesn't jar their brains a little bit, then something's wrong. Serge Ibaka had 18 points and 12 rebounds for the Thunder, who blew an 11-point lead in the third quarter and are now just 3-4 in their last seven games. "We were up (11). We can't just come in and play nonchalant basketball," Durant said. "We have to put them away. They are home, too, so if they make a few shots, they are going to get some momentum." NOTES: Luke Walton returned to the Cavs after missing Friday's game to attend a funeral. He didn't play in Saturday's game. ... Cleveland's Tristan Thompson had 11 points and 12 rebounds for his 18th double-double this season. ... The Thunder are now 22-5 when Westbrook and Durant score at least 20 points. ... Saturday's game completed a stretch of 12 of 15 games on the road for Oklahoma City.
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