PHILADELPHIA, May 1 (Ticker) -- Chauncey Billups
rescued the Detroit
Pistons. Then Rasheed Wallace
broke the heart of his hometown
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Philadelphia's Allen Iverson
followed a brilliant 37-point,
15-assist performance in Game Three with 36 points, but made
just two free throws in overtime and failed to get off a shot in
the final minute.
Meanwhile, former 76ers coach Larry Brown
designed set plays for
Wallace and Richard Hamilton
to hurt Philadelphia in overtime.
"We really defended well down the stretch and in the overtime,"
Brown said. "There were so many guys that made huge shots.
Rasheed got us going in overtime. I'm proud of my team. We kept
our poise and got the win."
Wallace hit a jumper over Samuel Dalembert
to start overtime and
followed with a 3-pointer from the right corner for a 90-85
lead with 2:44 remaining.
The Sixers tied it on a 3-pointer by Chris Webber
with 2:27 left
and a pair of free throws by Iverson with 1:48 remaining.
Wallace, who was born and starred in high school in
Philadelphia, converted another 3-pointer to give Detroit the
lead for good at 93-90 with 1:29 remaining.
"They were shots that we needed and they were shots that were
open," Wallace said. "Going into the overtime, we knew that
they had the momentum so we had to make the first couple of
shots and put the pressure back on them."
Dalembert scored on a drive to make it a one-point game with
1:07 left, but the Sixers did not score again. They had a
chance to take the lead, but Webber, who scored 23 points, left
a 3-pointer short with 37 seconds remaining.
Hamilton converted 10-footer from the left baseline off an
inbounds pass with 14 seconds to go, increasing the margin to
"We took a lot of time off the shot clock there and I was able
to get a good shot off," said Hamilton, who is from nearby
Coatesville. "Before that, Chauncey hit some big shots for us
in the fourth quarter and Rasheed hit some big threes in
With the Pistons double-teaming Iverson on the perimeter,
threw up a wild 3-pointer that went off the backboard and
the Sixers fouled Hamilton, who made two free throws to seal
"We were looking for a three right off the bat," Sixers coach
said. "They are an extremely good foul-shooting
team. We had four different options and things just didn't work
out. They defended it well."
The loss was especially heartbreaking for the Sixers, who
squandered a nine-point lead with six minutes left in the fourth
quarter and still had a chance to take the lead with three
seconds remaining. But Detroit native Willie Green
1-of-2 free throws.
Billups scored seven straight points with a jumper from the arc,
a runner in the lane and two free throws to tie it at 80-80
with 49 seconds left.
"I decided to run the offense and try to be aggressive and see
if I could get it going a little bit," Billups said. "The guys
found me and the shots were going down."
Iverson hit a jumper in the lane over Hamilton to give
Philadelphia an 82-80 advantage with 28 seconds remaining, but
Billups responded with a 3-pointer from the left corner, giving
Detroit the lead with 22 seconds left.
Green missed a 3-pointer but grabbed the rebound and was fouled
by Billups with three seconds to play. A 78 percent free throw
shooter, Green missed the first before making the second to tie
the game at 83-83.
"I was concentrating on trying to sink it," Green said.
"Unfortunately, I came up short on the free throw that could
have won the game for us."
The series shifts back to Detroit for Game Five on Tuesday.
"From a team standpoint, we gave the effort and that's all I
care about," said Iverson, who made 14-of-24 shots and added
eight assists. "I feel good about everything that we tried to
do. It just hurts that we couldn't get the win."