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Iverson's 28 points help 76ers improve to 1-1

10/31/2002

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Allen Iverson didn't let another poor
shooting effort bother him when the game was on the line.

Iverson had 28 points, including a go-ahead jumper in the final
minute, to lead the Philadelphia 76ers to a 95-93 victory over the
Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night.

"I just shot it with a lot of confidence,'' said Iverson, who
was 9-for-25, including 0-for-7 from 3-point range. "I tried to
shoot it in rhythm. I felt good shooting it all night, especially
the 3s. I thought all of them were going in except the last one.
I'm just glad I made that last shot because I struggled.''

Aaron McKie had 18 points, Keith Van Horn added 16 and Todd
MacCulloch had 10 points and a career-high 14 rebounds for the
Sixers, who are off to a 1-1 start. They opened last season with
five straight losses and were eliminated in the first round of the
playoffs after winning the Eastern Conference title in 2000-01.

Ray Allen scored 28 points for Milwaukee, but missed a long
jumper and turned the ball over in the final minute. Toni Kukoc had
18 points and Sam Cassell added 17.

"I just hate losing,'' Allen said. "We had too many turnovers
that gave them too many fastbreak points.''

Iverson's 18-footer from the left wing gave the Sixers a 91-90
lead with 36.5 seconds left. The three-time NBA scoring champion
had missed 13 of his previous 17 shots.

Allen then missed a long jumper, and Eric Snow stripped the
rebound from Michael Redd. Brian Skinner hit two free throws to
make it 93-90 with 16.8 second left. Allen then lost the ball while
driving to the basket, Van Horn grabbed it and Snow made a free
throw for a 94-90 lead.

Kukoc hit a 3-pointer to cut it to 94-93 with 4.3 seconds left,
and Iverson hit a free throw with 2.7 seconds remaining. The Bucks,
without a timeout, couldn't even get a desperation shot at the
buzzer.

Milwaukee, which trailed by eight points midway through fourth
quarter, took a 90-89 lead when Tim Thomas made one of two free
throws with 59.8 seconds left. But Iverson answered with his
jumper.

"There's going to be some ugly wins,'' said Van Horn, who came
to Philadelphia with MacCulloch in the offseason trade that sent
Dikembe Mutombo to New Jersey. "We have to get some chemistry.''

Iverson, who missed his last eight shots and shot 7-of-25 in
Tuesday night's 95-88 season-opening loss at Orlando, made four of
his first seven shots before losing his shot. He had seven assists
-- all in the first half.

The Sixers played without starting forward Derrick Coleman,
backup center Samuel Dalembert and key reserves Monty Williams and
Greg Buckner. Each of the four players has a knee injury.

Milwaukee was without starting forward Anthony Mason, out with a
hamstring injury.

"It was a typical Philly-Milwaukee game,'' Bucks coach George
Karl said. "Both teams played hard.''

Philadelphia built a 10-point lead late in the third quarter
with eight straight points. Van Horn had two free throws and a
3-pointer during the run, and Snow's layup made it 73-63.

Michael Redd hit a 3-pointer to end the run, but McKie sank an
18-footer as the Sixers took a 75-68 lead into the final quarter.

Philadelphia's biggest lead was 24-13 in the first quarter.

Game notes
The Sixers are 3-3 in home openers under Larry Brown, and
27-12 overall. ... Brown has 832 victories, tied with Cotton
Fitzsimons for eighth on the NBA's all-time coaches list. ...
Kukoc, a former Sixer, was loudly booed by the fans at the First
Union Center. Kukoc was traded to Atlanta in the deal that brought
Dikembe Mutombo to Philadelphia in February, 2001. ... Bucks guard
Kevin Ollie, another former Sixer, dislocated his right middle
finger in the second quarter, but returned. ... Iverson easily
could've had at least 10 assists in the first half, but Van Horn,
Snow and Art Long each missed short, open shots off his passes. ...
Before the game, Iverson told the crowd, "We know what we have to
do to win a championship and you know what you have to do to help
us. Now, turn up the volume and make some noise.'' ... Skinner had
13 rebounds in 21 minutes.