DALLAS :  Even without his trademark headband, LeBron James was easy to recognize. He was stillnba-logo wearing the No. 23 jersey and dominating with his play.

James had 27 points and took over sole possession of the Cavaliers’ career assists record as Cleveland beat the Dallas Mavericks 127-94 on Tuesday night.

After starting a game without a headband for the first time since the 2003 preseason as a rookie, James clearly preferred talking about how the team played instead of the absence of what usually covers his hairline.

James first took off his headband in the second quarter of Cleveland’s home game Saturday and never put it back on against Phoenix

Not even coach David Blatt knew if it was a conscious decision by King James to go without the headband the entire night against Dallas.

James, who finished 10-of-14 shooting with seven rebounds and eight assists in 29 minutes, was one of four players with more than 20 points for the Central Division-leading Cavs. They have won 12 of their last 13 games against Western Conference opponents and broke a 14-game losing streak in Texas.

Kyrie Irving scored 22 points, while Kevin Love had 21 points and 14 rebounds. J.R. Smith also scored 21 points and Timofey Mozgov, the other starter, had 17 in the opener of a four-game trip.

Chandler Parsons led Dallas with 18 points, while Monta Ellis had 17 and Amare Stoudemire 15. Dirk Nowitzki scored 13 points on only 3-of-10 shooting.

Dallas started the second quarter with a 31-26 lead, but James hit consecutive 3-pointers and then took the Cavs’ assist record all to himself with a pass to James Jones for another 3-pointer that made it 35-all less than 2 minutes into the quarter.

That was James’ first assist of the game and his 4,207th in a Cleveland uniform, breaking a tie with Mark Price for the franchise record.

Lakers snap 5-game skid, Pacers rout Magic 

INDIANAPOLIS: Rodney Stuckey is following instructions from Frank Vogel, and Indiana’s coach can see it paying off.

Stuckey scored a season-high 34 points with six rebounds and seven assists, and the Pacers beat the Orlando Magic 118-86 on Tuesday night for their sixth straight victory.

Damjan Rudez scored 17 points, and Luis Scola added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the surging Pacers (29-34), who moved into sole possession of seventh place in the Eastern Conference.

Tobias Harris had 22 points and six rebounds, and Elfrid Payton finished with 14 points for the Magic, who have lost five of seven games.

The Magic got back within 11 when Harris made a 3-pointer, but George Hill answered with a 3. Stuckey made a 3-pointer and made three other baskets, including one to give the Pacers an 89-70 lead early in the fourth quarter.

LOS ANGELES:  In their second straight season out of the playoffs, at least the injury-riddled Los Angeles Lakers know they can still beat the Detroit Pistons.

Jordan Hill led seven Lakers in double figures with 16 points on Tuesday night in a 93-85 victory that ended a five-game losing streak. It was their sixth straight win over the Pistons and 11th in the last 12 meetings, but they were officially eliminated from playoff contention before their game ended when New Orleans beat Brooklyn.

The game was Byron Scott’s 1,000th as an NBA head coach during the regular season. This is his first season with the Lakers, whom he helped win three championships as a player in the “Showtime” era with Magic Johnson as his backcourt mate. One of those titles came against the Pistons in 1988.

The Pistons led 50-49 at halftime but missed their first eight shots of the third as the Lakers went on an 8-0 run.

Results, 11 March 2015:

Indiana Pacers- 118 beat Orlando Magic- 86, New Orleans Pelicans- 111 beat Brooklyn Nets- 91, Cleveland Cavaliers- 127 beat Dallas Mavericks- 94, San Antonio Spurs- 117 beat Toronto Raptors- 107, Utah Jazz- 87 beat New York Knicks- 82, Los Angeles Lakers- 93 beat Detroit Pistons- 85

These NBA press releases have been made available to us through authorised sources.

Vishnu Ravi Shankar
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