Detroit wins series 4-1 (Game 5 of 5)

Detroit wins series 4-1

Game 1: Saturday, April 23rd
Game 2: Tuesday, April 26th
Game 3: Friday, April 29th
Game 4: Sunday, May 1st
Game 5: Tuesday, May 3rd

76ers 78

(43-39, 18-23 away)

Pistons 88

(54-28, 32-9 home)

Coverage: FSDT

8:00 PM ET, May 3, 2005

The Palace of Auburn Hills, Detroit, MI

1 2 3 4 T
PHI 24 20 17 1778
DET 21 22 17 2888

Top Performers

Philadelphia: A. Iverson 34 Pts, 1 Reb, 7 Ast

Detroit: C. Billups 23 Pts, 4 Reb, 7 Ast, 1 Stl

Detroit finishes with a flourish in the fourth

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- The defending NBA champions were at their best when it mattered most.

Richard Hamilton scored 10 of his 23 points in the final quarter as the Detroit Pistons followed three lackluster quarters with a dominant fourth and eliminated the Philadelphia 76ers 88-78 Tuesday night in Game 5 of their first-round series.

"We just didn't want to let this game slip away," Hamilton said. "The fourth quarter we always say is our quarter."

Detroit trailed for much of the game, but went ahead 62-61 when Tayshaun Prince made the first basket of the fourth quarter. An 8-0 run gave the Pistons an 80-69 lead with 4:48 left.

"They seem to flip a switch and turn it up on offense and defense," Sixers coach Jim O'Brien said. "Championship teams can do that."

The Pistons will play next against Indiana or Boston.

Allen Iverson scored 34 points, playing the last 10:56 after hurting his right ankle. Iverson landed awkwardly after missing a shot and was crumpled on the court before being helped to the bench. He had his right ankle taped and was quickly back in the game.

"I admire what he did," said Pistons coach Larry Brown, who coached Iverson for six seasons in Philadelphia before leaving for Detroit two years ago. "It was very courageous."

Iverson also went down hard after his shot was blocked from behind midway through the second quarter.

"I came out of the war beat up, but I feel like we competed," Iverson said.

Philadelphia's Chris Webber scored 11, and Samuel Dalembert had eight points in the first quarter but didn't score again until late in the game, finishing with 11 points.

The Sixers started three playoff neophytes, while Detroit returned all five starters from last season.

"Experience is tough to beat," Webber said. "So many times on the court, I looked on the right or left, to mentally tell somebody something. They've played together before and can make adjustments without coaching.

"Without experience, sometimes it's like you're a chicken running around with your head cut off."

Chauncey Billups scored 23 for the Pistons and Prince had 14 points, playing 45 minutes on a sprained right ankle. Ben Wallace added 11 points, 13 rebounds and a blocked shot, giving him a franchise-record 147 career playoff blocks.

Philadelphia started with a nothing-to-lose mentality while the Pistons came out passive, perhaps knowing they had to win only once in three games to advance. When Detroit did play with more intensity, it was often out of sync on offense during the first three quarters.

Both teams exerted almost as much effort complaining to officials as they did playing, with Rasheed Wallace getting called for a technical after Dalembert was whistled for going over Wallace's back, and Iverson arguing while his teammates were huddling on the bench during a timeout.

"That (technical) was felonious," Wallace said.

The Sixers were behind just twice in the first quarter, led by as many as seven and were ahead 24-21 at the end of the period.

Detroit seemed to seize the momentum when it took the lead with six straight points early in the second quarter, but Iverson put the Sixers back ahead on the next possession. The Sixers scored the final six points of the half to take a 44-43 lead.

"We had a horrible finish to the first half," Brown said. "Our dressing room was not a very happy place at halftime."

Game notes

Philadelphia's Kyle Korver averaged 11.5 points during the season, but averaged just five in the series. He had three points in 17 minutes in Game 5. ... John Salley had Detroit's previous playoff record with 146 blocks over 95 games. Wallace beat his mark in his 55th postseason game with the Pistons. ... Detroit's Antonio McDyess received 11 votes, finishing seventh, for the Sixth Man of the Year award. He had eight points, the only points the Pistons had off the bench. ... Cleveland's LeBron James sat between Detroit's bench and the scorer's table, and some Pistons shook hands with him just before tipoff. Also, Iverson chatted with James while Prince shot free throws in the first quarter.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 78 88
FGM-FGA 32-72 (.444) 32-80 (.400)
3PM-3PA 3-16 (.188) 2-15 (.133)
FTM-FTA 11-20 (.550) 22-27 (.815)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-33 14-46
Assists 15 20
Turnovers 14 14
Steals 3 5
Blocks 4 5
Fast Break Points 14 9
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 24 (0/0) 18 (1/0)
Largest Lead 7 11

Top Performers

Allen Iverson Iverson
Points: 34
Reb: 1
Ast: 7
Stl: 0
Blk: 0
Chauncey Billups Billups
Points: 23
Reb: 4
Ast: 7
Stl: 1
Blk: 0