LeBron ready for rematch with Spurs

(SportsNetwork.com) - LeBron James had a costly turnover for the Cleveland Cavaliers when they played the San Antonio Spurs earlier this season.

James looks for a measure of revenge for the Cavaliers, who will take on the streaking Spurs Thursday at the AT&T Center.

San Antonio, which has ripped off six straight wins, recorded a 92-90 victory in Cleveland on Nov. 19, as Manu Ginobili split a pair of free throws to stake the Spurs to a 92-90 lead with 9.1 seconds left before James lost the ball near midcourt. James dribbled behind his back as Ginobili lunged for the ball, but he lost it off his left hand as he attempted a crossover.

Ginobili then threw the ball into the air to run out the clock.

"I went behind the back and just lost it," James said. "That's how the ball rolls sometimes, not too upset about it."

James was recently asked if the first meeting with the Spurs left a sour taste in his mouth.

"Nah, of course not. We had our chances to win and we didn't," James said. "Both teams have been trying to get back into a rhythm since then."

The four-time NBA MVP spoke positively of San Antonio's chemistry when asked what to expect for Thursday.

"It's the same game that you always expect with the Spurs. It's going to be a high-motor; they're going to share the ball, they're going to move the ball, they're going to be in-tune," James said. "It's a team that has so much chemistry obviously because of all the years they've been together. They have championship DNA, so it should be a good one."

The Spurs beat the then James-led Miami Heat in five games to capture the NBA title last season, winning each game by an average of 18 points. James then left South Beach to return to Cleveland in free agency.

San Antonio is unbeaten in the last 10 games against Cleveland and has won each of the previous five matchups in the Alamo City.

The Spurs are 4-0 on a six-game homestand, which resumed with a 117-107 triumph over the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday. Reigning NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard had 24 points, 11 rebounds and five steals, while Tony Parker posted 23 points and nine assists for the Spurs, who shot 48.2 percent and have scored 100 or more points over the past six games.

"I don't want to take away from the win, it was a great win against a great team, but we should have finished the game before," Parker said.

Tim Duncan, who left with an elbow injury, provided 12 points and 13 boards in the triumph. Duncan and Ginobili (illness) are probable Thursday.

San Antonio has won six in a row at home, is 12-1 in the past 13 as the host and will close out the stay Sunday versus Minnesota. It is jockeying for position in the crowded and competitive West.

Cleveland opened a four-game road trip with a convincing 127-94 beatdown of the Dallas Mavericks Tuesday night. James was one of four Cavs with 20 or more points, ending with 27 on 10-of-14 shooting, eight assists and seven boards.

Kyrie Irving had 22 points, Kevin Love provided 21 and 14 rebounds, and J.R. Smith tallied 21 points for the Cavaliers, who have won four of five and are 22-5 since mid-January. Cleveland scored 41 points in the second quarter, made 15-of-32 3-pointers and had a 50-42 rebounding advantage.

"The best thing about tonight, we played 48 minutes tonight, we shared the ball offensively, we moved the ball, we pushed the ball, we defended, and we played a great game," said James, who passed Mark Price (4,206) for first on the franchise's all-time assists list.

James did not wear his signature headband for the game.

The Central-leading Cavaliers improved to 12-1 in the last 13 games against Western Conference foes, outscoring them by more than nine points in that stretch. They are 33-5 when reaching the century mark in scoring and pushed their road record to 17-16 on the season.

Cleveland, which is second in the East standings, will visit Florida next to battle Orlando and Miami.