EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., March 30 (Ticker) -- Kenyon Martin
his best behavior.
Martin had 18 points in his return to the lineup, including a
pair of key dunks at the end of the third quarter, to lead the
New Jersey Nets to their second win in four days over the
Philadelphia 76ers, 102-92.
added 19 points and 17 assists for the Nets, who
extended their franchise-record home winning streak to 11 games.
Martin missed the last two games due to a suspension after
committing his eighth flagrant foul of the season in Sunday's
victory over Atlanta. He returned in impressive fashion,
particularly after the Sixers cut the lead to 69-64 on two free
throws by Eric Snow.
NBA TV highlights from|
Kenyon Martin lifts off for a ferocious slam against the Sixers.
The Nets responded with three straight dunks, the first two by
Martin. The last was a one-handed highlight-reel slam by
off a pass from Kidd that gave the Nets a
73-64 lead with 18 seconds left in the third quarter.
"I thought he played great tonight. I thought his demeanor was
great," Nets coach Byron Scott said.
"It didn't look like he was backing down because of some of the
statements that have been made. I thought he played very
aggressive and very smart. That is the Kenyon Martin that I
have been looking for and I have been getting most of of the
Philadelphia got no closer than five points in the fourth.
The Sixers cut it to 90-85 before Kidd sank two free throws and
Martin scored on a driving layup.
"(The dunks) felt real good," Martin said. "I missed two in the
first half, I didn't want to miss those. I felt like I played
had 23 points and Eric Snow
20 for the Sixers,
who have split four games since superstar guard Allen Iverson
broke his left hand.
Injuries have plagued the Sixers all season and they endured
another when guard Speedy Claxton
collided with Jefferson in
the fourth quarter. Claxton suffered a bruised left cheekbone,
needed three stitches to close a gash in his lip and will be
checked for a concussion.
The Sixers went to the foul line just nine times and coach
Larry Brown was highly critical, not only of the officiating
crew of Eddie F. Rush. Michael Smith and Ken Mauer, but of many
of the league's newer referees.
"These referees have no respect for players and coaches in this
game. It's the saddest thing. You can't even talk to a guy
without a referee coming back at you," Brown said. "Our guys
bust their tail to get back in the game and I just ask the guy
and he has a remark right away. It's unbelievable. They don't
show you any respect. It's a shame.
"I've been doing this too long. When we had two officials, the
older guys had a respect for the game and the players. These
new guys, they're all like robots. They don't have any feel
for players' feelings or coaches' feelings, and they act like
we're their adversaries, and that's the saddest thing about the
nature of our game."
The Sixers, who complete a stretch of four games in five days
on Sunday against Toronto, fell one-half game behind Milwaukee
into sixth place in the Eastern Conference standings.
Six players scored in double figures for the Nets, who won at
home for the 30th time, their largest victory total since the
Keith Van Horn
had 19 points, Todd MacCulloch
13 and Kerry
and Aaron Williams
12. MacCulloch also tied a career
high with five blocks.
But most of the attention was on Martin, who made 7-of-14 shots
from the field.
In the fourth quarter, he set a legal pick near midcourt that
flattened Matt Harpring
"Everybody made a big deal and focused on him," Kidd said. "I
thought he played really well for his first game in a week."
The Nets built a 54-37 lead at intermission with the help of
two big first-half runs, each of which ended with a 3-pointer
A 16-4 spurt late in the second quarter gave the Nets their
biggest lead of the game at 52-34 with 1:56 left. Martin had a
three-point play before Kittles' 3-pointer.
"I think we dug a hole so deep in the first half that it made
the uphill battle too tough in the second half," Snow said.
"But I think our energy in the second half was a lot better
than in the first."
Coleman, a former Net, made an embarrassing mistake with seven
seconds left in the first half.
Thinking time was running out, he grabbed a rebound and heaved
the ball the length of the court and out of bounds.
The Nets started strong, using a 12-0 run to take a 16-6 lead
just 5:12 minutes into the game. Van Horn had a jumper and a
three-point play as the Nets took a 26-21 lead after one
The Nets and Sixers have split four meetings this season.