Originally created 11/30/03

76ers beat Hawks

PHILADELPHIA -- Once the flu didn't stop Allen Iverson, nobody could.

Iverson scored a season-high 50 points, leading the Philadelphia 76ers to a 98-86 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday night.

Kenny Thomas had 13 rebounds and reserve John Salmons added 13 points for Philadelphia, which leads the Atlantic Division despite a 9-9 record.

Weakened by a flu, Iverson had a season-low 12 points and missed 15 of 19 shots in a loss to Indiana on Friday night. He had 13 points in the first quarter against Atlanta, and kept scoring.

"I didn't feel better, but I was rested," Iverson said.

Jason Terry had 20 points and Shareef Abdur-Rahim had 17 for the Hawks, who are off to a 6-12 start.

It was the ninth time, including playoffs, that Iverson has scored 50 or more points in his eight seasons. He had 55 in a playoff victory over New Orleans last April.

"He was phenomenal," Sixers coach Randy Ayers said. "We really needed it."

Iverson made six of his seven shots - all jumpers - in the third quarter, and finished 20-of-34, including 4-of-7 from 3-point range. He had 14 of Philadelphia's 18 points during one stretch as the Sixers pulled away early in the fourth quarter.

Consecutive 3-pointers by Iverson and Salmons gave the Sixers an 80-68 lead less than two minutes into the fourth quarter, and the Hawks didn't threaten the rest of the way.

"He wasn't missing anything," Hawks forward Stephen Jackson said. "When a guy is shooting like that, there's nothing you can do."

Iverson scored 14 straight points for the Sixers, including a fallaway jumper for a 93-80 lead with 2:54 left. He made two free throws to reach 50 points with 1:06 remaining, and received a standing ovation when he went to the bench.

"It's always special, always a good feeling to get in a groove like that," Iverson said. "But the most important thing is to win the game."

The Sixers were again without forward Derrick Coleman, who missed his second straight game with a left knee injury.

Philadelphia led 42-32 after an alley-oop slam by Thomas off a pass by Aaron McKie. But the Hawks closed out the second quarter with a 12-4 run to get within 46-44 at halftime. Terry had seven of the 12 points during the stretch, beginning the spurt with a 3-pointer and ending it with a driving layup.

"Allen Iverson had a fantastic game," Hawks coach Terry Stotts said. "When a jump shooter gets it going, it's tough to stop him."

Notes: Iverson was fined $10,000 for making an obscene gesture toward fans in Milwaukee during Philadelphia's 95-91 loss to the Bucks last Monday. "I made a mistake and I deserve it," Iverson said. ... Former Hawks forward Glenn Robinson sat out his 11th game because of a sprained left ankle. Coleman missed six games with the same injury earlier in the season, then returned for two games. ... The Hawks were 3-1 against the Sixers last season. ... Former Sixers center Theo Ratliff had six points and five rebounds. ... Iverson has scored 40 or more points 49 times in his career. He had six assists and five rebounds.


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