Sixers fall for eighth time in 10 games


PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The Charlotte Hornets put the Philadelphia
76ers away with a timely switch to a zone defense.

After blowing a 19-point lead, Charlotte went to a zone defense
that stopped a Philadelphia spurt and helped lift the Hornets to a
94-85 victory Wednesday night.

"It got them out of their rhythm when they were making their
charge," Hornets coach Paul Silas said.

Lee Nailon had a career-high 27 points, Baron Davis added 19
points, P.J. Brown had 15 points and 13 rebounds, Elden Campbell
had 12 points and 10 rebounds and David Wesley also had 12 points
for the Hornets, who snapped a two-game losing streak.

Allen Iverson led Philadelphia with 38 points on 13-of-30
shooting. Aaron McKie had 17 points and Derrick Coleman and Dikembe
Mutombo each grabbed 12 rebounds for the 76ers, who had a two-game
winning streak snapped and have lost eight of their last 10.

"We weren't getting stops so they could play zone," Iverson
said. "Guys are not attacking, not taking the ball to the

A jumper by Wesley as the shot clock buzzer sounded gave the
Hornets a 90-84 lead with 1:09 left in the game. On the ensuing
possession by Philadelphia, Campbell blocked a runner floater by
Iverson, leading to layup by Nailon to put the game away.

After a fast-break dunk by Nailon gave Charlotte a 79-68 lead
early in the fourth quarter, the 76ers scored 10 straight,
including eight by Iverson to close to 79-78 with 7:21 left. The
Hornets then scored the next five, including two on free throws
after Mutombo and Iverson were whistled for technicals during the
same play, to go ahead 84-78 with 6:15 remaining.

The Hornets broke open a 64-64 tie in the third quarter by
scoring 13 of the last 17 points of the quarter, with Nailon making
three baskets in the final minute as Charlotte took a 77-68 lead.
Charlotte's zone defense allowed the Sixers to making just three
baskets in the final seven minutes of the quarter.

"(The zone) really worked well," Wesley said. "We got them to
stand around and take jump shots and when they did try to drive the
lane we closed up the middle."

The first half consisted of two very different quarters.
Charlotte outscored the Sixers 38-21 in the first quarter, thanks
to 59 percent shooting (17-of-29) and a 16-6 rebounding advantage.

Philadelphia came back strong in the second quarter, rebounding
from a 19-point deficit and scoring 26 of the last 35 points of the
half to pull to 55-53 at halftime. Iverson had 13 points and was
4-of-7 from the field in the quarter.

Game notes
The Hornets' 38 first-quarter points were the most allowed
by Philadelphia this season, while the 32 scored by the 76ers in
the second were their most this season. ... The win snapped
Charlotte's three-game losing streak in Philadelphia. ... Iverson
has scored 30 or more points in four of his last five games.