CLEVELAND - It's over. Finally. Barely.
Nearly two months after it started innocently, the Cleveland Cavaliers stopped their NBA-record losing streak at 26 games Friday night with a 126-119 win in overtime against the Los Angeles Clippers, who did all they could to extend the Cavs’ misery.
Cleveland won for the first time since Dec. 18 against the New York Knicks, and had to go an extra five minutes to ensure it didn’t set a record for the longest skid in pro sports history. The Cavs will gladly settle with tying the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers for the worst streak among the four major sports.
It’s one they didn’t want to own, and they played like it.
Antawn Jamison scored 35 points and made the game’s biggest basket, a 3-pointer with 22 seconds left in OT for the Cavs. Daniel Gibson scored nine in overtime and J.J. Hickson, playing like a man possessed all night in a matchup with Blake Griffin, added 27 points and 14 rebounds.
“I can smile again,” Gibson beamed when it was finally over. “It feels pretty good. Winning is a precious feeling.”