In the opening round of the National Basketball Association playoffs, the Philadelphia 76ers won for the first time in their best-of-seven series against defending champion Detroit with a 115-104 victory over the Pistons.
Philadelphia erased an early 13-point deficit, then came on strong in the fourth quarter to defeat the visiting Pistons Friday. NBA regular season top scorer Allen Iverson netted 37 points and made 15 assists to lead the Sixers, who cut Detroit's series' lead to 2-1. Game four of the Eastern Conference matchup is Sunday in Philadelphia.
The Phoenix Suns are just one win away from advancing to the second round of the playoffs after trouncing the Memphis Grizzlies 110-90 to take a three-games-to-none lead in their Western Conference series. Phoenix, with the best record in the NBA, can complete its sweep of the Grizzlies Sunday with a victory in Memphis.
In another Western match-up, the Sacramento Kings beat the Seattle SuperSonics 116-104, but still trail the series 2-1. Mike Bibby led the host Kings with 31 points and seven rebounds. Seattle missed its last 10 shots from three-point range. Game four is Sunday in Sacramento.
In Saturday's Eastern Conference playoff action, the Chicago Bulls try to make it three wins in three games when they visit the Washington Wizards. And, Indianapolis hosts the Boston Celtics in game four of their best-of-seven matchup, which the Pacers lead 2-1.
In the West, the Dallas Mavericks try to even their series against Houston, taking on the Rockets in game four. And the San Antonio Spurs face the host Denver Nuggets in a series tied at a game apiece.