Six games were not enough to determine if the Boston Celtics were too
old or if the Philadelphia 76ers are too young to advance to the
Eastern Conference semifinals. So, they will lineup Saturday in Boston
for the most dramatic of postseason encounters — Game 7 — to solve the
So far, it is the Sixers who have been the surprise, a youthful bunch
under Doug Collins that took Wednesday night’s Game 6 82-75 to for the
decisive meeting in Boston.
‘Game 7,” coach Doug Collins said. ”That’s all we wanted was . . .
give ourselves a chance to go into Boston and see what happens on
Mission accomplished. Former all-star guard for Philly, Allen
Iverson, presented the game ball before tipoff and the eighth-seeded
76ers performed much like Iverson did all his stellar career as a Sixer:
with grit and determination. The sellout crowd was delighted by the
play of guard Jrue Holiday and forwards Andre Iguodala and Elton Brand.
Holiday scored 20 points and Brand had 13 points and 10 rebounds and
Iguodala some powerful dunks as the 76ers improved to 5-0 following a
loss in the playoffs.
No team has won consecutive games in a series where neither team has
played well enough to seize control. But the Sixers were good enough to
win Game 6, improving to 5-0 this postseason in games following a loss.
This was not an artistic achievement. Boston shot 33 percent
shooting, had 17 turnovers and made just 3 of 14 from three-point range.
Paul Pierce had 24 points and 10 rebounds and Kevin Garnett had 20
points and 11 boards.
”We found a way to stay in the game, for the most part,” Pierce said.
They did because the Sixers missed 8 of 9 3-pointers, shot just 17 of 28 from the free throw line and had 12 turnovers.
But they won nonetheless, making Saturday must-see TV.