The first half was tightly contested as both teams scored well. Evan Turner had his first 8 shots fall in one of the best performances of the season. The Sixers pulled ahead before the half and they entered the break with a fragile 60-57 lead. The second half was just as competitive as the first as this game would have 31 lead changes as well as 21 ties. Regulation would end in a 108-108 tie as both teams tightened up their defense in the final 3 minutes. Both teams had chances to pull ahead with their final possessions but MCW and Deron Williams would miss their attempts for their respective teams. This would force the Sixers 5th overtime game of the season.
Neither team was able to definitively pull ahead in OT, but it looked as if Paul Pierce had put it away, hitting a three to give Brooklyn the 120-119 lead with :16.9 remaining. Brett Brown used the timeout to draw up the right play that would give Philadelphia the win. The ball was inbounded to Hawes at the top of the key. Thad Young, who had a great game of his own, set the solid screen for Turner under the hoop who looped around to take the hand-off from Hawes and drive to the basket getting off his contested layup before the buzzer. The ball bounced around the rim and would not fall in until after the buzzer sounded, giving the Sixers their first win in 17 days. Turner's game-winner ended the contest 121-120.
Turner was the star of the game as he started and finished it well. He ended with 29 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists. Both Turner and Young shot over 50%, leading the Sixers who shot 51% as a team. Thad Young scored 25 points, grabbed 6 rebounds, and had 3 steals. Carter-Williams played well in his return, finishing with 15 points, 10 dimes, and 3 steals of his own for another double-double in his young career. Hawes struggled with his shot (3-14 FG) but contributed 10 points and more importantly 9 rebounds and 8 assists. Philly received some solid play off their bench from Lavoy Allen and Tony Wroten, who returned to the bench after filling in for MCW. Allen scored 10 points and added 7 rebounds and 4 assists. Wroten added a scoring spark off the bench as he ended with 19 points. The 76ers won the battle in the paint, out-scoring Brooklyn 66-30 and out-rebounding them 49-36 as the Nets obviously missed Garnett's (rest) defensive presence.
Alan Anderson led the Nets with 26 points and Pierce added 24 and 10 boards. Brook Lopez scored 22 points and added 7 rebounds and Deron Williams handed out 14 assists to go with his 17 points. The Sixers allowed their opponent to take advantage of them from long-range for the third game in a row as Brooklyn connected on 15 of 33 attempts from beyond the arc.
The Sixers look to hold onto this winning feeling as they travel to Milwaukee to play the Bucks on Saturday.
By: Matt Ryan