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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, April 6th (All times eastern)

Charlotte Bobcats (15-58) at Philadelphia 76ers (36-37), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - The playoff hopeful Philadelphia 76ers will aim to improve their postseason chances tonight, when they take on the Charlotte Bobcats at the Wachovia Center.

Philadelphia came up with a big 97-93 win over the arch-rival Boston Celtics at the FleetCenter on Sunday afternoon.

The Sixers have sliced Boston's lead in the Atlantic Division to 3 1/2 games with nine contests to play. Philadelphia and Boston will meet one more time on April 12 at the Wachovia Center.

Philadelphia remains eighth in the Eastern Conference playoff race, two contests behind Cleveland for seventh place. The Sixers are holding on to a tenuous one-game lead over ninth place New Jersey as well. Philadelphia has one meeting with Cleveland, New Jersey and Indiana remaining on the slate.

Allen Iverson's jumper with 22.7 seconds remaining sealed the victory for the Sixers on Sunday. Iverson finished with a game-high 38 points, nine assists and six steals for the 76ers, who ended a three-game losing streak. Philadelphia jumped out to a huge lead after the first quarter only to see it dwindle down the stretch.

Philadelphia remained without star forward Chris Webber (shoulder). Webber, who is averaging 15.8 points and 7.8 rebounds per contest, has a slim chance of returning to the lineup tonight.

Samuel Dalembert had 18 points and 15 boards in the win -- Philadelphia's third versus Boston this season (3-0). Rodney Rogers and Andre Iguodala tacked on 10 points apiece in the victory.

The Sixers, who have six of their final nine contests at home, are 20-15 in their friendly confines this season. Philadelphia has split its last four home contests overall.

Charlotte continues to struggle with five consecutive losses, including a 104-102 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers at Charlotte Coliseum on Tuesday night. Brevin Knight ended with 21 points and 13 assists for the Bobcats, who have dropped 16 of their last 19 contests.

Gerald Wallace added 19 points, Emeka Okafor posted 17 points and 10 rebounds and Primoz Brezec recorded 12 points and nine boards.

The Bobcats shot 44 percent from the field, including 4-of-7 (.571) from three-point range. Charlotte hit 26-of-37 (.703) from the free throw line, while being outrebounded 46-41. The Bobcats committed 15 turnovers, leading to 21 Los Angeles points.

Charlotte guard Jason Hart did not play because of illness. Hart is listed as questionable for this evening's contest.

The Bobcats, who are beginning a four-game road trip tonight, are 3-32 in foreign buildings this season. Charlotte has lost 13 of 14 and 22 of its last 24 road games.

Philadelphia has won both meetings between these teams this season, including a 112-80 thrashing of the Bobcats on March 11 at the Wachovia Center. Iverson is averaging 24.5 points in the first two meetings.

04/06 10:09:54 ET


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