Iverson: Finger- pointing happens

Posted: January 20, 2004

Is dissension on the 76ers growing at the same rate as their number of losses?

Allen Iverson says that the team is together, but he acknowledged after yesterday's 90-81 loss to the Seattle SuperSonics at the Wachovia Center that there has been finger-pointing.

"It's not like it's a real big issue," he said. "You hear a little whispering and talking and stuff you don't hear once we are winning."

Apparently, more than a few fingers are being pointed on an 18-23 team that has lost four of its last five games.

"It's not one individual or two individuals," Iverson said. "That's the way things happen when you lose games, and it's just natural for that type of stuff to happen."

Iverson said that there has been finger-pointing even during better times.

"Me being in the league eight years, I have seen it even the year we went to the [NBA Finals]," he said. "You whisper about something and talk about something."

Iverson didn't single out culprits, but he made a plea for more team harmony.

"Once we get together and get on the dance floor, it's important for us to just be a unit and throw all that out the window," he said.

It's all part of riding out a bad streak, Iverson added, although in the Sixers' season so far, there haven't been many good ones.

"When things are going bad, you are always going to hear negative stuff," he said. "It's important for us to handle things on the basketball court and be accountable for each other."

Successful homecoming. Guard Ronald "Flip" Murray, a Strawberry Mansion graduate and a second-year pro with the Sonics, got 55 tickets that had been allotted to teammates and gave them to friends and relatives yesterday.

Murray scored nine points in 25 minutes while shooting 3 for 10 from the field. He hammered down one high-rising dunk that captivated the crowd.

"It was a great chance for me to play in front of friends and family," he said. "But on the other side of things, we needed this win because we were on a four-game losing streak."

Thomas healthy. After having sat out two games with a sprained right ankle, Sixers forward Kenny Thomas played 35 minutes, scoring 14 points and grabbing 12 rebounds.

"I'm fine," he said after the game. "It was like a miracle, and I'm happy to be playing again."

Short shots. The Sixers signed forward Zendon Hamilton to a second 10-day contract. In nine games with the team, he is averaging 2.2 points and 2.1 rebounds. . . . The Sixers shot 31 for 79 (39.2 percent), which gave them a 1-9 record when they shoot less than 40 percent. . . . Guard Eric Snow suffered a bruise to the lower part of his right leg in the fourth quarter and left with 47.2 seconds remaining. He has made 184 consecutive starts. . . . In the last seven games, Glenn Robinson is averaging 23.9 points and shooting 58.7 percent from the field.

Contact staff writer Marc Narducci at 856-779-3225 or mnarducci@phillynews.com.

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