EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) --Staying inside is paying off for
Martin celebrated his 25th birthday with 28 points and 10
rebounds, and the Nets tied a franchise record with their 13th
straight home win by beating the Cleveland Cavaliers 102-88 Monday
"I'm letting it come to me and my shot selection is a lot
better,'' Martin said after his second straight double-double.
"I'm not shooting all jump shots like I had been. I'm getting in
the paint early and everything else is falling in line.''
In his three seasons in the league, Martin has often settled for
his jump shot. Against the Cavs, not one of his points came from
"He's playing great basketball,'' Nets coach Byron Scott said.
"He's playing smart and under control. He's not really looking to
score. He's just letting everything pretty much come to him. When
he plays that way, he's hard to guard.''
Jason Kidd added 17 points and 10 assists and Richard Jefferson
had 19 points for the Nets, who have won seven straight overall and
18 of 19 at the Continental Airlines Arena.
"We don't pay much attention to records anymore,'' Martin said.
"That was last year. We just go out and take things one game at a
Ricky Davis hit five 3-pointers, scored 24 points and added 10
assists, but he couldn't prevent the Cavaliers from losing their
14th straight on the road, two shy of the team record set in 1984.
Rookie Dajuan Wagner, a former high school star from Camden, added
22 points in his first game as a pro in New Jersey.
"They just took it up a notch,'' Wagner said. "They came up
and killed us. They're one of the best in the league and they have
the best point guard in the league. It's frustrating. We played
good, but we were up against a really good team tonight.''
The Nets used a 21-2 run bridging the end of the first quarter
and the start of the second to take the lead for good.
Kidd ignited the run by blocking a fast-break layup attempt by
Wagner, which set up a big slam by Martin. Seconds later, Martin
had a steal and assist to set up a basket by Rodney Rogers that put
the Nets ahead 19-18.
Kidd had four points in the run and Anthony Johnson came off the
bench to added five early in the second quarter.
The Nets led 53-41 at the half, and Kidd and Martin helped blow
the game open in the third quarter by scoring 10 points apiece.
Martin also had four rebounds, three assists and two blocks in the
quarter to register his second straight double-double.
Cleveland (6-27) made a run late in the third quarter and early
in the fourth. Davis' final 3-pointer got the Cavaliers to 85-76,
but Aaron Williams converted a three-point play and Jefferson hit a
jumper to push the lead to 14 points.
"We controlled the tempo in the first quarter but those guys
are good, they know how to play,'' said Davis, who was called for
two technical fouls. He wasn't ejected because the first was for
hanging on the rim.
Nets shooting guard Lucious Harris had 15 points after
being named NBA player of the week. ... Kidd blocked three of
Wagner's shots in the first half. ... The Cavs started Carlos
Boozer at forward because Tyrone Hill had the flu. ... The Nets'
seven-game overall winning streak is the second-longest in
franchise history. ... New Jersey's 12 victories in December are a