Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Sports

Sixers roar back to even up series

PHILADELPHIA — Andre Iguodala snapped a tie with five straight points in the final 90 seconds to help the 76ers storm back from a 15-point deficit Friday night and stun the Celtics 92-83 in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

The young Sixers were reborn in the second half and played like a squad that refused to roll over for the Celtics.

"I don't even know where to start," 76ers coach Doug Collins said. "Our guys are pretty amazing. They really are."

Philly tied the best-of-seven series at 2 with the huge comeback and guaranteed a return home for one more game.

Iguodala, one of the most maligned athletes in recent Philadelphia history, put the Sixers ahead 85-83 with a step-back jumper and hit a 3-pointer for a five-point lead.

Iguodala and Evan Turner had 16 points each and Lou Williams added 15.

Kevin Garnett had his first bad outing in an otherwise monster series with nine points. With Garnett in a funk, so were the Celtics.

The Sixers kept attacking, turning a first half of airballs, botched dunks and sloppy defense into a full-blown display of near-flawless basketball.

Thaddeus Young's thunderous slam tied the score at 63 in the middle of the fourth. Jodie Meeks drained a 3 on the Sixers' next trip down the court for Philadelphia's first lead. Williams hounded Paul Pierce and forced a turnover, fed the ball to a streaking Turner for a dunk and put the lead at 68-65.

Pierce had 24 points and Rajon Rondo had 15 points and 15 assists. Garnett, who turns 36 today, missed nine of 12 shots.

Philadelphia outscored Boston, 61-37, in the second half and led 44-12 in bench scoring.

"Coming out of halftime they came out more physical, and we got into that instead of playing basketball. We lost our composure," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said.

BOSTON (83): Pierce 8-13 4-4 24, Bass 6-10 3-4 15, Garnett 3-12 3-4 9, Rondo 7-14 1-1 15, Bradley 2-6 3-4 8, Hollins 1-2 0-0 2, R.Allen 2-6 0-0 5, Pietrus 1-4 2-2 5, Dooling 0-4 0-0 0, Daniels 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 30-71 16-19 83.

PHILADELPHIA (92): Iguodala 5-12 3-6 16, Brand 1-2 1-2 3, Hawes 1-5 0-0 2, Holiday 4-9 3-3 11, Turner 5-22 6-9 16, L.Allen 4-10 0-0 8, T.Young 4-8 4-6 12, L.Williams 5-11 4-6 15, Meeks 2-3 4-4 9. Totals 31-82 25-36 92.

Boston 24 22 17 20— 83

Philadelphia 12 19 28 33— 92

3-Point GoalsBoston 7-23 (Pierce 4-6, R.Allen 1-4, Bradley 1-4, Pietrus 1-4, Rondo 0-2, Dooling 0-3), Philadelphia 5-11 (Iguodala 3-3, Meeks 1-2, L.Williams 1-4, Holiday 0-2). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsBoston 44 (Garnett 11), Philadelphia 62 (L.Allen 10). AssistsBoston 23 (Rondo 15), Philadelphia 18 (L.Williams 8). Total FoulsBoston 28, Philadelphia 19. TechnicalsGarnett, Hollins, Brand, Hawes. A20,411 (20,318).

Heat takes a break

INDIANAPOLIS — As panic ensued along South Beach and the scrutiny intensified, the Heat decided to chill out. After the storm, there was silence.

A day after Miami lost by 19 points and Dwyane Wade lost his cool in Game 3 against Indiana, the Heat canceled practice and media availability. It stayed in its downtown hotel.

A team that loves the spotlight dodged it for a day.

Trailing 2-1 in the series and with Chris Bosh out, the Heat has two days before Sunday's Game 4, which LeBron James deemed vital to the title chase.

"It's a must-win, honestly," the league MVP said after Game 3.

The Pacers also took advantage of the two-day break, skipping practice. Teams are not typically required to meet with the media when there are two days off between games and they do not practice.

Clippers, down 2-0, look for signs of life

LOS ANGELES — Down 2-0 after Thursday's 105-88 loss to the Spurs, the Clippers face the task of needing two wins at home to catch the NBA's hottest team in the West semifinals.

Today's Game 3 is crucial for the Clippers. No team in league history has rallied from a 3-0 deficit to win a series.

"The next game is our Game 7," Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro said. "We got to fight, we got to claw, we got to do whatever we can."

Around the league

BLAKE THREATENED: Lakers guard Steve Blake and his wife received multiple online threats after he missed a big shot late in Los Angeles' 77-75 Game 2 loss to Oklahoma City in their West semifinal.

"I let our security people know about it and kind of kept a record of what was said just in case, but other than that, try not to make a big deal out of it," Blake said.

Blake said he and his wife, Kristen, were besieged on Twitter by curses, threats, and "people saying things I don't even really want to repeat," he said.

He rarely uses Twitter, but his wife is a frequent user of social media. The family has three young children.

MORE LAKERS: Pau Gasol won the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award for his extensive charity work as a UNICEF ambassador, winning a vote by members of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

"It's a great honor for any player to receive," Gasol said after a shootaround in preparation for Game 3 late Friday against Oklahoma City.

HAWKS: The team is exercising its option on coach Larry Drew's contract for next season. He returns for a third season despite the team's first-round exit from the playoffs.

Comments
Bucs release two-time Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin

Bucs release two-time Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin

TAMPA — After six up and mostly down seasons, Doug Martin's run with the Bucs is over.The two-time Pro Bowl running back was released by Tampa Bay Tuesday, a move that was expected after he failed to rush for less than 500 yards in four of the ...
Updated: 3 minutes ago
Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville must vacate its 2013 men’s basketball title following an NCAA appeals panel’s decision to uphold sanctions against the men’s program in the sex scandal case. The Cardinals will have to vacate 123 victories including the c...
Updated: 21 minutes ago
Could Detroit’s Mike Green be next domino to fall at deadline?

Could Detroit’s Mike Green be next domino to fall at deadline?

The Red Wings have started wheeling and dealing, shipping goalie Petr Mrazek to the Flyers for a package of conditional draft picks.That has shifted focus to a potential Lightning target, Red Wings defenseman Mike Green, who is expected to be moved b...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Nationally revered runners to appear at Gasparilla

Nationally revered runners to appear at Gasparilla

Two of the national running society's most inspirational figures are set to make guest appearances this weekend at the Publix Gasparilla Distance Classic.Four-time U.S. Olympic marathoner Meb Keflezighi, who retired from the sport last year, and comp...
Updated: 2 hours ago
U.S. biathletes, who shoot guns to compete, speak out on gun control for America

U.S. biathletes, who shoot guns to compete, speak out on gun control for America

DAEGWALLYEONG, South Korea — For his profession, Lowell Bailey wears a .22 caliber rifle strapped to his back. It has taken him across the world and to four Olympic Games, most recently to the biathlon mixed relay Tuesday night at Alpensia Biathlon C...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Age is a valued number for motocross rider Chad Reed

Age is a valued number for motocross rider Chad Reed

Chad Reed is set to break one of the most impressive records in motorsports, but it’s not the mark he wants most.The Dade City resident and native Australian has started 227 main events in the Monster Energy Supercross 450 cc series, tying former rid...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

PORT CHARLOTTE — Tropicana Field is getting new turf — again.Shaw Sports will replace the surface installed last spring in a mutual decision with the Rays that it did not look as good — from the stands or on TV — as expected.T...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Some big Bucs roster decisions are looming

Some big Bucs roster decisions are looming

The Bucs plan to release running back Doug Martin and defensive tackle Chris Baker sometime before the NFL scouting combine which begins Feb. 27 in Indianapolis.There likely will be more, but they still are undecided on the future of defensive ends R...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Here’s really how to fix Major League Baseball

Here’s really how to fix Major League Baseball

ST. PETERSBURG — Major League Baseball has a problem. A big problem.The games are too long. They are too boring. They are too slow.Something needed to be done and, well, Major League Baseball did something.The brain trust put those big brains t...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Steven Souza on Rays roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

Steven Souza on Rays roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

RF Steven Souza Jr., returned to camp today after missing four days to attend to family matters in Seattle.He did not go into detail about why left. When asked if everyone in his family is okay, he said, "Right now. We'll just leave it at that."Souza...
Updated: 4 hours ago