Iverson leads 76ers over undermanned Kings

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The Sacramento Kings could've used either Ron Artest or Peja Stojakovic against Allen Iverson and the
Philadelphia 76ers.

Iverson scored 41 points and Chris Webber had 17 points and 13 rebounds, leading Philadelphia to a 109-103 victory over undermanned Sacramento on Tuesday night.

The Kings were without Stojakovic because he stayed at the hotel after the team reportedly agreed to send him to Indiana for Artest earlier in the day. However, the trade fell through, though Artest left open the possibility that something could still happen. The volatile forward was deactivated by the Pacers in December after requesting a trade.

"I had no control over any of it," Kings coach Rick Adelman said. "I didn't have Peja. I told them to play with the hand you're dealt."

Mike Bibby had a career-high 44 points and Kevin Martin added 20 as the Kings lost their third straight game. Sacramento has won at least 55 games in four straight seasons but is last in the Pacific Division.

"As far as distractions go, not having Peja was the biggest thing," Bibby said. "We still don't know what's going on."

The Kings visit the New York Knicks on Wednesday, but Adelman wasn't sure about Stojakovic's status.

"I have a lot of faith in Peja," Adelman said. "He's meant a lot to me and this franchise. He's been a pro his whole career."

The Sixers have won three in a row, improving to 21-20 at the halfway point of the season. Philadelphia, which came in allowing the third-most points in the NBA, reverted to its usual form on defense after consecutive solid efforts.

The Sixers held Memphis and Minnesota to under 90 points each, but they allowed the Kings to shoot 47.6 percent.

"We've gotten a little bit better on the defensive end," coach Maurice Cheeks said. "Tonight wasn't one of our best defensive efforts, but if we're going to making a move, we'll have to do it on the defensive end."

Playing in front of his father, Sixers assistant coach Henry Bibby, Mike Bibby put on a shooting clinic in the second half. He made six straight shots in one stretch and was 12-of-14 after going 5-of-11 in the first half.

Sacramento trailed by 10 early in the fourth, but got within 93-90 on a 3-pointer by Bibby. After a jumper by Webber, Bibby hit another 3 to make it 95-93.

With Sacramento trailing 99-97, Andre Iguodala knocked the ball out of Bibby's hands, off his leg and out of bounds. Iguodala then hit a 3-pointer to give the Sixers a 102-97 lead with 1:58 left. Webber made two free throws in the final minute to seal the win over his former team.

"I feel good about how we're trying to get better defensively," Iverson said. "We're nowhere near where we want to be, but I like the effort."

At one point in the second quarter, the Sixers went 6:29 without a basket while missing nine straight shots. But their 9-point lead only shrunk to 39-34 during that stretch.

The Kings cut it to 44-43, but Philadelphia scored the next six points to take a 50-43 halftime lead.

Sacramento center Brad Miller, averaging 14.8 points and 8.1 rebounds, missed all eight of his shots and finished with two points and one rebound in 32 minutes.

Game notes
Sixers reserve forward Lee Nailon wasn't in uniform because
he was arrested Tuesday after a domestic dispute, according to the
team. ... Bibby's previous career-high was 42 against Orlando on
Jan. 15. ... The Kings are in the middle of a season-high six-game
road trip. ... The Sixers won both meetings to sweep the season
series after being swept the previous four years. ... All-Star
shortstop Jimmy Rollins won a free-throw shooting contest among
five Phillies players after the third quarter.