NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, April 3rd (All times eastern)
Philadelphia 76ers (35-37) at Boston Celtics (39-33), 1 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Life without star forward Chris Webber continues for the Philadelphia 76ers this afternoon, when they have a showdown with the Atlantic Division-leading Boston Celtics at the FleetCenter.
Webber, who is expected to be out 7-to-10 days, will be missing his second consecutive game with a shoulder sprain he suffered in Phoenix on Wednesday.
The 76ers could use Webber this afternoon, as they are running out of time to catch the Celtics in the Atlantic. Currently, Boston leads the Sixers by four games, while Philly is hanging onto the eighth seed in the East by just a half-game over Orlando.
Philadelphia didn't fare well without Webber on Friday night, dropping an ugly 100-83 decision to the Dallas Mavericks at the Wachovia Center. The Sixers have lost three consecutive contests with their past two coming by an average of 23 points.
Allen Iverson and Marc Jackson each had 22 points for Philadelphia in the defeat. Josh Davis added 10 rebounds and eight points off the bench, while rookie Andre Iguodala posted 10 rebounds, six points and four assists.
Iverson was forced to sit out the fourth quarter due to a strained groin. The league's leading scorer is expected to play this afternoon despite a multitude of injuries (Achilles soreness, strained groin, foot).
The Sixers, who rely heavily on long distance jumpers, hit only 2-of-20 (.100) from three-point range against Dallas. Philadelphia shot just 37.8 percent from the field, including Rodney Rogers' 1-for-11 effort.
Philadelphia's Kyle Korver hit 1-of-5 three-point attempts and tied Dana Barros' single-season franchise mark of 197 set during the 1994-95 campaign.
Philadelphia coach Jim O'Brien, who previously coached the Celtics before resigning due to a conflict with Boston general manager Danny Ainge, will be trying to sink his former squad today.
Philadelphia has lost its last two road contests to slip to 15-22 in foreign buildings for the year. The Sixers have dropped four of their last six on the road.
Boston got a much-needed 116-100 victory over the lowly Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on Friday, snapping a four-game losing streak. Ricky Davis poured in a season-high 36 points to anchor the Celtics to the victory. Davis finished the game 14-of-17 from the floor and went 8-for-10 from the free throw line.
Paul Pierce added 17 points, while Gary Payton collected 14 points and dished out eight assists in the win. Tony Allen tacked on 10 points in the victory.
Celtics forward Antoine Walker suffered a bruised left knee in the win and is listed as a game-time decision for today's game. Walker had an MRI on the injury Saturday which showed nothing more than a deep bruise.
Boston shot an impressive 60 percent from the field, including 4-of-11 (.364) from three-point range. The Celtics drained 22-of-30 (.733) from the free throw line.
The Celtics will try to improve on their impressive 25-12 home mark this afternoon. Boston has actually lost its last two home tilts on the heels four- game home win streak.
Philadelphia has won both meetings between these teams this season, including a 98-95 decision at the FleetCenter on Nov. 3. These squads have split their last six meetings overall. In fact, Philadelphia has won seven of its last 10 trips to Beantown.
04/03 10:10:33 ET