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Pistons Have No Answer for Iverson

May 12, 2003|From Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — Allen Iverson's quick feet and smart decisions couldn't be stopped by Detroit -- especially with the Pistons getting almost nothing on offense from anyone but Richard Hamilton.

Iverson had 36 points and 11 assists Sunday night, giving Philadelphia one major, distinct advantage -- a player who can create with the ball -- as the 76ers evened their second-round series at 2-2 by beating the Pistons, 95-82.

Chauncey Billups returned to the lineup for Detroit after sitting out two games because of a sore left ankle, but the point guard made only one of six shots and did not make a single drive to the basket.

Backup Chucky Atkins had all sorts of trouble trying to defend Iverson, whose quickness enabled him to get open for jumpers -- or to drive the lane or the baseline, draw extra defenders and create enough easy baskets to allow Philadelphia to maintain a comfortable lead throughout.

Iverson had his shot working, making jumpers on three consecutive possessions early in the fourth quarter to give Philadelphia a 70-56 lead. He scored 15 in the quarter.

Iverson finished 13 for 27 from the field, and his 11 assists accounted for more than half of Philadelphia's total. He also had five steals and five rebounds.

Hamilton finished with 30 points to lead the Pistons.

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