Toronto, Canada – ATLANTA (Reuters) - The Cleveland Cavaliers used stingy defense and a fourth quarter burst to beat the Atlanta Hawks 95-84 on Tuesday and post their fifth straight win.
Mo Williams shot a team-high 20 points and LeBron James 14 with 10 assists and eight rebounds for the Cavaliers, who scored 10 unanswered points early in the fourth quarter and then choked the Hawks offense to coast to victory.
"That's what we do. We lock down in the fourth quarter," James told reporters after recording five steals.
"That's where games are decided. It was a complete team effort."
Jamal Crawford scored 26 points off the bench, but the Hawks (21-9) were confined to just 10 in the final quarter as they became the Cavaliers' third successive opponent to be restricted to less than 90 points.
Cleveland's win follows blowout victories over top teams the Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers during a successful Western Conference road-trip of four stops.
The win was also their first return to Atlanta since sweeping the Hawks in last season's Eastern Conference semi-finals.
The Cavaliers smashed their opponents in the rebound count (43-30) and drew valuable contributions from Delonte West (17) and Zydrunas Ilgauskas (15) to make up for James' sloppy 6-for-20 shooting from the field.
Joe Johnson and Josh Smith had 15 points apiece but the Atlanta offense went missing in the fourth and were kept scoreless for nearly nine minutes.
"I don't know how to even begin to explain it," said Hawks coach Mike Woodson. "We didn't execute. We threw the ball all over the place. Offensively we were our own worst nightmare."
The Hawks will get another crack at their Eastern Conference foes on Wednesday when they travel to Cleveland.
(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Ian Ransom)