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News » Iverson answers

Iverson answers

Iverson answers
AUBURN HILLS -- The Detroit Pistons are asking a lot from Allen Iverson.

They want him to defend more, shoot less, and recognize when he needs to defer offensively to another teammate.

But on Friday, with the game on the line, there would be no deferring on Iverson's part.

One of the NBA's greatest scorers, he didn't disappoint as Detroit almost squandered a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter against Oklahoma City before escaping with a 90-88 win.

Iverson scored the game-winning basket on a running 9-footer with 0.3 seconds to play.

Oklahoma City (3-27) had one last chance to tie, but a lob pass to Jeff Green was off the mark as time expired.

"Allen did a good job of taking his time and attacking," Pistons coach Michael Curry said.

"He did what he has done throughout his career: Make big shots to win the game."

Iverson's status for the game was unknown until just before tipoff. He suffered a groin injury in the third quarter of the Pistons' 104-98 win against Chicago on Tuesday, and was unable to return.

Iverson went through the Pistons' morning shootaround Friday, but acknowledged he didn't push himself as hard as he does normally.

"I told my wife that I was just going to try and give it a go," Iverson said. "She made the comment, 'I just can't stay away from it.' She's right. I just wanted to play."

Especially in the fourth quarter. That's when Iverson took over offensively.

Iverson, whose 23,461 career points rank 17th all-time, scored 14 of his team-high 22 points in the final quarter.

Curry was not surprised by how close the game was, especially considering the Pistons didn't practice Wednesday or Thursday.

"I hope it's good for their bodies," Curry said of the time off.

"But this group, I really don't like this group having that much time off. Hopefully we're not as rusty."

Curry's concerns were justified, as Detroit missed 10 of its first 13 shots from the field.

Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: December 30, 2008


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