Milwaukee Bucks' Thon Maker, left, reaches in on Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday in Milwaukee.
MILWAUKEE — LeBron James had 24 points and eight assists, and Kyle Korver hit three straight 3s in a decisive third-quarter run to help the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Milwaukee Bucks 116-97 on Friday night.
Kevin Love added 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Cavs. Their 15-5 spurt over the final 4:25 of the third quarter, sparked by Korver's long-range shooting, opened a 13-point lead. Cleveland led by double digits most of the rest of the way to spoil the Bucks' home opener.
The defending Eastern Conference champions started the season with a second straight victory over an East contender after beating the Boston Celtics in their home opener.
Korver finished with 17 points and was 5 of 6 from 3-point territory.
Milwaukee's Giannis Antetopounmpo had 34 points on 15-of-22 shooting, along with eight rebounds and eight assists. Malcolm Brogdon had 16 points.
But the Bucks had trouble early on keeping up with the Cavaliers in the paint, where Cleveland held a 64-50 edge. Jae Crowder added 14 points, providing an active presence in the lane.
The Cavs were 2 of 10 from 3-point range in the first half, but powered their way to a 55-49 halftime lead by attacking the basket. They were nearly unstoppable once they found their shot from long range.
At one point, James hesitated for a couple seconds after being left alone at the top of the 3-point arc. Antetopounmpo then took a couple steps out from near the bucket before James hit the open look for a 101-86 lead with 6:19 left.
Cleveland Cavaliers' Jae Crowder layups against
Cavaliers: Six Cavs scored in double figures. ... After hitting at least 10 3s in all four meetings last season with Milwaukee, the Cavaliers finished 11 of 26 from behind the arc. They were 9 of 16 in the second half. ... Cleveland missed its first eight 3-pointers before Korver hit two in a row in late in the second quarter. ... Love had an active first half with 13 points and six rebounds.
Bucks: Brogdon and Tony Snell (nine
points) combined to start 3 of 5 from 3-point range in the
first quarter, converting on open looks after defenders
converged on driving teammates in the lane. The Bucks cooled
off and went 3 of 16 the rest of the first half from behind
the arc. ... The team signed F Joel Bolomboy to a two-way
contract. The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 1.8 points and 1.4
rebounds as a rookie last season for Utah.
Cavaliers: Host the Orlando Magic on Saturday night.
Bucks: Host the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday night.