PHILADELPHIA, March 25 (Ticker) -- Chris Webber
had his best game with
the Philadelphia 76ers. Allen Iverson
made sure it was not
Iverson, who scored 36 points, nailed a go-ahead jumper with 2.4
seconds left as the 76ers posted their fourth win in five
games, a 103-101 triumph over the Toronto Raptors.
NBA TV highlights from |
"I'll take it," said Iverson, who hit his third career
game-winning jumper - all this season. "I wish that it didn't
come down to that, but I'll take it any way we can get it."
Webber, who largely had struggled since being acquired from
Sacramento on February 23, scored 32 points on 15-of-25 shooting
for the Sixers, who moved two games in front of idle Orlando
for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot.
"It felt very comfortable today, the minutes (40) felt really
good," Webber said. "It just felt normal. I'm happy for the
win mostly, because this effort would have meant nothing. I
knew that it was going to come back to me. I just really felt
comfortable, even if the shots didn't fall tonight."
The last time two Sixers scored 30 or more points in the same
game was on April 1, 1998, when Iverson and Derrick Coleman each
had 30 vs. Washington.
"That's how you draw it up," Iverson said. "I know that's how
(Sixers GM) Billy King was thinking - 'If we can get these guys
to co-exist, it would be big for us.' It's been six or seven
years since two guys hit 30 points in the same game with this
uniform on. I feel good mainly for Chris. With all of his
struggles, his main concern was us."
"It feels good to play with (Iverson)," Webber said. "We
already have the trust out there, but now you see the results of
it. You know what happened and you feel comfortable going back
to it. It's almost like we're in training camp. Coach has
changed things for me so I can get used to playing their way. I
thought that it would be quicker, but as long as it clicks
before the playoffs, we'll be all right."
Sixers coach Jim O'Brien
is optimistic that better things are
ahead for Webber and Iverson.
"If they play more and more together, they will feed off of one
another," he said. "I thought Chris' passes were great. Just a
real solid performance when you can match these guys up on one
side of the court, either passing or getting handoffs and
pick-and-rolls. Good things will continue to happen. I thought
it was a spectacular game by both of those guys."
After Toronto guard Rafer Alston
tied the game, 101-101, on a
3-pointer with 1:29 left, each team had two empty possessions,
including a pair of missed jumpers by Raptors swingman
- Webber's close friend and "Fab Five" teammate at
"I picked a horrible time to have my worst game of the year,"
said Rose, who scored eight points on just 2-of-16 shooting. "I
didn't step up when the team needed me to. I felt like our
guys played hard. If we got the production that I'm capable of
giving, that would have given us a chance to win. That's the
reason why we lost."
After Sixers rookie Andre Iguodala
grabbed Rose's misfired
jumper with 25 seconds left, Iverson worked the clock down, then
swished a jumper from about two feet beyond the foul line over
"Coach is always telling me to drive to the basket. If you
don't get the basket, maybe you'll get a foul called," Iverson
said. "I had thought about that, but I had been throwing the
ball away and I didn't want to chance that at that point of the
"If (Alston) got up on me and played me aggressively, then I
wouldn't have had any choice but to go in there. He didn't play
it that way. He backed up off me and I guess he dared me to
take the shot. I knew it was good when I let it go."
The Raptors called timeout, then inbounded the ball to Rose.
Getting it on the right side, he dribbled to his left and
launched a jumper that bounced off the rim as time expired.
"Donyell (Marshall) did a good job of getting me the ball on the
move," Rose said. "Just like a lot of my other shots, it
didn't go in. This loss is on Jalen. I blame Jalen Rose for
Marshall - who scored a career-high 38 points and tied an NBA
record with 12 3-pointers in a win over Philadelphia on March 13
- had 26 points and nailed 7-of-12 shots from the arc in this
one. Mostly guarded by Webber, Chris Bosh
added 24 points and
22 rebounds and Alston chipped in 18 and 10 assists for the
Raptors, who have lost four of five.
The Sixers opened a 94-87 edge on a jumper by Webber with 7:20
remaining, but the Raptors tied it at 98-98 on a layup by Rose
off a steal with 2:33 remaining. Philadelphia scored the next
three points on a technical free throw by Iverson and a jumper
by Webber before Alston tied it from the arc.