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    Bradley Beal returns with double-double to power Wizards past Cavs

    Dec 31, 2021
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    Bradley Beal goes 13 for 23 in 34 minutes of action.
    PHOTO: AP

    WASHINGTON — Bradley Beal had 29 points and 10 assists in his return from the NBA's health and safety protocols, and the Washington Wizards beat the Cleveland Cavaliers, 110-93, on Thursday night (Friday, Manila time).

    Beal, in his first game action in 12 days, shot 13 of 23 from the floor in 34 minutes. Washington (18-17) avoided falling below .500 for the first time this season.

    Kyle Kuzma had 25 points and 10 rebounds for Washington, which shot 45 of 90 from the floor (50%) and committed only eight turnovers. The Wizards seized the lead for good midway through the second quarter.

    Deni Avdija scored 13 points and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope made four 3-pointers for 12 points in his return from a virus-related absence.

    Kevin Love had 24 points and 11 rebounds for Cleveland in its first game since losing point guard Ricky Rubio for the season with a torn left ACL. Evan Mobley added 21 points as Cleveland lost consecutive games for the first time since Dec. 5-6.

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    Beal made nine of 13 shots before halftime, and his dunk off a feed from Corey Kispert gave Washington its largest lead of the half, 58-51, at the break.

    That was part of a 16-2 run that stretched into the third quarter.

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    Caldwell-Pope opened the third with a 3, Beal followed with a tough leaner, Brad Wanamaker converted a three-point play and Kuzma dunked in transition as Washington raced to a 68-52 advantage.

    Wes Unseld Jr

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    Wes Unseld Jr.’s Wizards improve to 9-5 at home. PHOTO: AP

    TIP-INS

    Cavaliers: F Lamar Stevens and G/F Dylan Windler returned after a 12-day layoff spent in the league's health and safety protocols. … In Rubio's absence, rookie G Kevin Pangos made his first career start. … The Cavs had their streak of consecutive 100-point offensive performances snapped at 17 games.

    Wizards: C Daniel Gafford had 11 points and nine rebounds. ... G Spencer Dinwiddie was placed into health and safety protocols before the game. … Beal picked up a technical with 8:35 to play in the third quarter. …Wanamaker made his third career NBA start and first with Washington after signing a 10-day contract via the NBA hardship exception on Thursday. … C Jamie Echenique also signed a 10-day contract via hardship exception.

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    NO MORE FITZ MAGIC

    Kathleen Fitzpatrick, aka "Ms. Fitz," the Washington teacher whose half-court shot earned her third graders hot chocolate and became a viral video hit, made a halftime appearance.

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    With a team-store discount for the crowd on the line, this time the former Rutgers guard came up empty in three attempts from the center circle.

    UP NEXT

    Cavaliers: Host Atlanta on Friday night.

    Wizards: Host Chicago on Saturday night.

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    Bradley Beal goes 13 for 23 in 34 minutes of action.
    PHOTO: AP
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