Forty-eight hours ago all hope seemed to be lost for the Sixers in their star-crossed chase for the playoffs. Tonight, things are looking much better. The Sixers fought off a scrappy Boston team tonight, holding on for an 88–82 win. Meanwhile, the Nets, Pacers and Knicks all lost. The Sixers picked up a game on every team they were chasing, but the Magic. If they can muster a win tomorrow night, in New Jersey, they’ll be 3 games back with 9 to play.
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. The result of tonight’s game was huge for the Sixers, but the game itself was putrid. Violet Palmer, Mark Wunderlich and Bennie Adams (the refs) completely ruined this game from a viewer’s perspective. They called about 50 traveling violations, apparently they forgot this was a regular season NBA game between two teams with a combined record of 50–92. The teams combined for 48 turnovers and 46 personal fouls.
The Sixers came out strong, and built a 15 point lead before missing 12 consecutive shots in the fourth quarter and allowing the Celts to come back and tie the game. Luckily, the Sixers had Andre Iguodala to rely on, whereas Doc Rivers decided to call Rajon Rondo’s number again and again down the stretch. Iguodala sparkled throughout the game (when he wasn’t getting whistled for walks), he finished with 23 points on 6–13 from the floor, with 12 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 swipes in 47 minutes. He’s your player of the game, but Sammy Dalembert’s line is worth noting as well.
In my preview, I picked Al Jefferson vs. Dalembert as the key match-up. Jefferson was solid, 20 points, 8 boards, but Dalembert owned the glass and finished with another double-double (12 pts, 13 boards). Dalembert almost made it a triple double, but fell 2 turnovers short of 10 (my unofficial count was 6 walks called on Dalembert).
Korver was unconscious tonight, he led all scorers with 26 and did it in a variety of ways. Andre Miller followed up a horrible performance in Washington on Wednesday with an equally atrocious showing tonight. Miller just looks out of sorts, and Lou Williams is playing more an more minutes in Mo Cheeks’ shortening rotation. Willie Green missed his second consecutive game with a knee problem.
Here’s a kelly-green tinted wrap-up of the game from Loy’s Place.