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News » Suns wipe out 76ers' early advantage

Suns wipe out 76ers' early advantage

Suns wipe out 76ers' early advantage The 76ers' lead drifted away slowly, setting like the sun.

With each Steve Nash assist, each Amar'e Stoudemire floater, each Jason Richardson trey, the home team's advantage became smaller and smaller until, at the final buzzer, the Phoenix Suns had won, 119-115.

Last night at the Wachovia Center, the Sixers played their best Basketball of the season. They led by as many as 16 points, were ahead by 66-54 at the half and 86-84 after the third quarter, and led until 5 minutes, 1 second remained in the fourth.

The sequence on which this game pivoted came with 2:30 left. On what looked to be an easy fastbreak conversion, Sixers reserve Rodney Carney missed a contested layup. Teammate Thaddeus Young grabbed the rebound and overshot the put-back.

Four seconds later, Richardson dunked, with a foul, at the other end. His free throw gave the Suns a 111-108 lead.

"We did not have floor balance, obviously " Sixers coach Eddie Jordan said of the play. "It was so fast. I looked up and there was Jason Richardson again."

Point guard Lou Williams took - and missed - all three Sixers shots after Richardson's dunk until 49.5 seconds were left.

By that time, the Suns were ahead, 113-108.

The Suns improved to 7-1. The Sixers fell below .500 at 3-4.

"It's a loss, that's about it," said Sixers swingman Andre Iguodala, who had a team high of 24 points. "We played better tonight than the last few games. We should have had it."

Richardson made five first-half three-pointers and finished the game with six, scoring 29 points. Most of his buckets were aided by Nash, whose 20 assists tied the entire Sixers team.

Nash also scored 21 points, giving him the NBA's first 20-point, 20-assist game since he did it during the 2005-06 season, when he recorded 22 assists and 28 points in a loss to the New York Knicks.

"Steve Nash, I don't know what to say about the guy," Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry said. "I love the fact that everybody thinks he's getting older and a step slower."

Nash assisted on four of Stoudemire's six field goals as Stoudemire finished with 17 points.

One suspected that the Suns, even in the middle of a long road trip, would not drift toward a loss, not with Nash maneuvering around pick-and-rolls, driving, then dishing to a quartet of open shooters.

Phoenix made 15 three-pointers. This season, the Sixers have allowed 14-plus three-pointers four times, after allowing the same number only five times all last season.

"I thought we took away the paint," Jordan said. "And that's first."

Added Jordan: "We played a team that even when they get down, they're smarter and they have more weapons."

The Sixers built their first-half lead with a lineup of one starter, Young, along with rookie guard Jrue Holiday and fellow backups Willie Green, Marreese Speights, and Jason Smith.

Speights scored 20 points, 11 of them in the fourth quarter, and made a handful of buckets down the stretch.

"We run-and-gun, they run-and-gun," Speights said. "But they're a little bit better than us."

Contact staff writer Kate Fagan at 856-779-3844 or kfagan@phillynews.com.

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Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: November 10, 2009


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