PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Kyle Korver stunned almost everyone with
perhaps the most thrilling 3-pointer of his career.
Korver was mobbed by his wildly celebrating teammates. Boston
players sat dazed on the bench. A third overtime was on deck.
Allen Iverson simply pumped his fist, his face expressionless as
if he expected it.
"Kyle hit that big shot and I was thinking, 'If he hit that
shot, we've got to win it," he said.
After Korver sent the game into a third overtime, Chris Webber
delivered a clutch steal and secured the Philadelphia 76ers'
125-124 victory over the Celtics on Friday night.
"It was an amazing game," Sixers coach Maurice Cheeks said.
Was it ever.
Webber had 31 points and 13 rebounds, Iverson scored 33 points
with 10 assists, and Samuel Dalembert had 20 points and 11 rebounds
in the Sixers' longest game since a triple OT victory over Miami on
Nov. 20, 1992.
Korver added 12 points -- including his biggest 3-pointer of the
season -- as the Sixers avoided dropping two games under .500 for
the first time since Dec. 9.
With the Sixers ahead 125-124 and only seconds left in the third
overtime, Mark Blount grabbed a defensive rebound and looked down
the court for an open man, only to have Webber reach around and
strip the ball.
"I was very cognizant of the fact, don't touch him," Webber
said. "I saw him hold it out there. He was looking at the ref. A
lot of times they'll hold the ball close to their chest and he
didn't do that today."
Iverson missed two free throws -- the second intentionally -- with
2 seconds left. Delonte West's heave was off the mark, ending the
drama in the 395th game between the longtime, fierce rivals.
"It's tough, but it's fun," Pierce said. "It's draining, but
I'm glad I had a chance to be a part of it."
Korver prolonged the drama when he buried a game-tying 3-pointer
over a flailing West to end the second overtime tied at 121-all.
"I pulled up, and gave about all I had," Korver said. "It was
on line, luckily."
While Iverson calmly pumped his fist, Brian Scalabrine mouthed
"What are you going to do?" as the rest of the Celtics headed for
the bench stunned.
Boston scored the first three points of the third overtime on a
free throw and then a basket from Blount.
Over? No way.
Andre Iguodala added a driving layup and Webber gave the Sixers
a 125-124 lead on two free throws. Each team only made one basket
in the third overtime, fatigue perhaps finally playing a factor.
"You had guys that were exhausted out there," Cheeks said.
Davis played 57 minutes and Pierce 51 for Boston. Iverson
checked in at 54 minutes, Andre Iguodala at 52 and Webber 50. The
Celtics went 44-for-100 from the floor; the 76ers 41-for-99.
Each team had a chance to put away the game in the earlier
Webber powered his way down the baseline for a layup and a
118-117 lead with 21 seconds left in the second overtime. Pierce
lobbed a pass from the top of the 3-point arc to a streaking,
wide-open Blount for an uncontested dunk that gave Boston a 119-118
lead with 17 seconds left in the second OT.
The Celtics appeared to have this game won until Korver did what
he does best -- hit a clutch 3-pointer.
"I'd like to see the tape on that," West said. "I thought I
was there. I forced him to take a tough one. That's what good
Webber scored the first four points of the first overtime, and
Davis scored six to finish the quarter tied at 109.
Oddly, the Sixers chose to play a clip from "Cheers," Boston's
favorite bar, to get what was left of the sold-out crowd pumped for
the second overtime.
Both Davis and Webber picked up offensively where they left off
in the first OT, with Davis' three-point play matched by Webber's
3-pointer from the top of the arc.
Pierce lobbed a pass from the top of the 3-point arc to a
streaking, wide-open Blount for an uncontested dunk that gave
Boston a 119-118 lead with 17 seconds left in the second OT.
West -- the former Saint Joseph's star who received a warm
ovation during pregame introductions -- heard nothing but boos when
his 14-footer over Iverson from the right side tied the score
101-all with 51 seconds left.
Iverson missed the final shot of regulation as time expired.
West had his Hawks shorts hanging in his locker and said he
wore them under his pants to the game. West said he's received some
good-natured ribbing from his former Saint Joe's backcourt mate,
Orlando's Jameer Nelson. "I talked to him a couple of days ago and
he was like, 'I already reached 30 (points) so you've got to step
your game up," West said. ... The Sixers missed seven straight
shots early in the second quarter and the Celtics used a 15-2 run
near the end of the quarter to take a 65-57 halftime lead. It was
Boston's season high for points in a half.