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Newz Forum: BASKETBALL: Iverson scores 27 in 76ers' win

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posted on Oct, 24 2004 @ 08:35 PM
PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Allen Iverson is settling into the point guard role just fine.

Iverson scored 27 points and Willie Green added 15 to lead the Philadelphia 76ers to an 86-81 exhibition victory over the New Jersey Nets on Saturday night.

The 76ers, playing at home for the first time after five road games, got 12 points from Green and Iverson in the final 3:50 to key the deciding run and provide a glimpse of how good their reconfigured backcourt could be.

Green is the likely starter at shooting guard, but Josh Davis, last season's CBA MVP, got the nod against the Nets, while Iverson slides to the point to fill the spot vacated by Eric Snow.

"It's good to have Allen on the court. I thought he played a great basketball game," 76ers coach Jim O'Brien said.

Iverson and Green had the bulk of the playing time in the fourth quarter, and Iverson gave the 76ers a 77-76 lead on a jumper from the top of the key. Iverson converted a loose ball pickup into an off-balance layup for a 79-76 lead and Green added a couple of long jumpers.

"They have a special player in Iverson," Nets coach Lawrence Frank said. "He's a blur."

Iverson missed six of his 11 shots through three quarters before going 4-for-5 with a 3-pointer in the fourth. The 76ers forced five turnovers in the fourth, with two steals by Iverson.

"That's how we want to play, getting down and dirty on defense," Green said.

Iverson wasn't seen as a true point guard who could distribute the ball. In his first try at point several years ago under former coach Larry Brown, Iverson showed little interest in the job.

So far, O'Brien said Iverson has been very unselfish, usually looking for the open man and leading the fastbreak.

"I'd rather have the ball in his hands than anyone else," O'Brien said.

Davis scored only three points in 17 minutes, but he has been one of the biggest surprises of the preseason. He was the CBA most valuable player last season with the Idaho Stampede, averaging 18.7 points and 9.6 rebounds in 40 games.

O'Brien said Davis' defensive toughness could help earn him valuable minutes.

"I think I can help this team out in a lot of different ways and I'm excited to see what happens," Davis said.

Philadelphia forward Kenny Thomas sat out with a lower back injury and Aaron McKie did not play. Nets coach Lawrence Frank decided to rest forward Richard Jefferson, one night after he scored 23 points against Boston. Aaron Williams left with a sprained left foot.

Zoran Planinic led the Nets with 13 points, Brian Scalabrine added 11 and Eric Williams had 10.

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