Suns 102, Cavaliers 98
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CLEVELAND (AP) _ Shawn Marion scored 25 points as the Phoenix Suns beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 102-98 Saturday night, clinching a playoff berth for the 13th consecutive season.
Marion scored nine straight points over a 2:36 span and Phoenix went on a 14-4 run for its first lead of the game, 66-64, midway through the third quarter.
Jason Kidd punctuated the outburst with a 3-pointer and an 11-foot jumper as Phoenix moved ahead to stay.
Lamond Murray scored nine points in the fourth quarter as Cleveland stayed close. The Cavaliers closed within 98-96 with 17 seconds left when Clarence Weatherspooon converted a bad pass by the Suns’ Rodney Rogers into a slam dunk.
Tony Delk then drove for a score, was fouled on the play, and made the free throw, pushing the Suns’ lead back to five points.
Kidd, who left the Suns’ game against Minnesota on Friday night with back spasms and a sore knee, finished with 17 points and nine assists in 43 minutes.
Weatherspoon and Matt Harpring each scored 20 points for the Cavaliers.
Cleveland made nine of its first 11 shots and moved out to a 21-6 lead. The Suns missed 11 of their first 13 attempts.
The Cavaliers’ lead reached 17 points, 49-32, before Rogers sparked the Suns.
Rogers scored eight points in 49 seconds, hitting a 16-foot jumper with 3:01 left in the first half, a driving layup, a free throw and a 3-pointer with 2:12 remaining in the period.
Notes: Phoenix went 43 consecutive possessions without a turnover during the second and third quarters. ... The Suns scored 30 points off 22 Cleveland turnovers and yielded just 14 points on 11 turnovers. ... Cleveland guard Trajan Langdon matched a career high with seven rebounds. ... Several members of the Baltimore Orioles, in town to play the Indians, were in attendance, including coach Eddie Murray, Delino DeShields and Jerry Hairston.