Iguodala's late basket edges Grizzlies

PHILADELPHIA -- Andre Iguodala might want to enjoy the rest he'll get over the All-Star break.

The way the 76ers swingman is playing, his goal of making the NBA's midseason game a habit just might come true.

Iguodala scored 18 points and made the winning basket with 26 seconds left, lifting the Philadelphia 76ers to their fourth straight win, 91-87 over the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night.

Iguodala shook off a slow start and scored nine points in the fourth quarter with most of his damage coming in the final 2 minutes. He tied the score at 82, put the Sixers ahead by two, then won the game on a twisting bank shot.

He had the ball at the top of the arc, drove to his left and made a left-handed toss over the outstretched arm of Marc Gasol for an 89-87 lead.

"I gave him a stutter step and I knew I was going to get a good look," Iguodala said. "I didn't want to give him a chance to try and block the shot. I wanted to move the ball away from him."

Hakim Warrick, who tied a career high with 31 points for the Grizzlies, missed a dunk and Iguodala and Samuel Dalembert sealed the win from the free throw line.

"A lot of situations in the past, we didn't execute defensively down the stretch," said Sixers coach Tony DiLeo. "We did in this game, so that was a good sign that we learned."

DiLeo was talking about the only two blemishes on Philadelphia's season-long homestand. The Sixers went scoreless the final 10 minutes of the loss against New Jersey and lost with five-tenths of a second left against Boston.

They still went 5-2 on the homestand and Philadelphia (27-24) moved three games over .500 for the first time since winning the first three games of the 2006-07 season. The Sixers enter the All-Star break with a 14-4 mark since Jan. 6.

"We have a chance to get into the four spot and try to get into the playoffs," said Sixers forward Thaddeus Young.

Andre Miller had 24 points and Young scored 12 for the Sixers.

O.J. Mayo finished with 16 points and Mike Conley had 13 for the Grizzlies. Mayo helped rally the Grizzlies from a 12-point hole and nailed a 3-pointer with 48 seconds left that tied the score at 87.

He missed an open 3, though, that could have tied the game at 90 and then a turnover and another missed 3 on Memphis' final two possessions doomed their bid for the dramatic win.

"We can't fault the effort, we just couldn't get the big stop," Memphis coach Lionel Hollins. "We'll refocus and come out running."

Same with Iguodala. DiLeo told Iguodala to enjoy this All-Star break because he predicted this would be the last one off for a few years with the way the guard has blossomed into their best player.

"The biggest thing is becoming a better player and proving your doubters wrong," Iguodala said.

The Sixers have won 14 of 18 games to enter the break as one of the hottest teams in the NBA. They almost let this one slip away.

Warrick (12 of 19 from the floor) led the charge back from a 12-point hole and his layup late in the third period tied the score at 57. Iguodala converted a three-point play and Miller hit a pair of jumpers to give the Sixers a 64-59 lead at the end of the quarter.

Miller was nearly flawless from the floor and scored 16 points in the first half to help the Sixers lead 41-37 at halftime. But he had only one assist and none of the other Sixers got involved in the offense. Iguodala, their leading scorer at 17.8 points, had only one basket in the half and that was on a dunk with 54 seconds left in the second period.

Once Iguodala got going, so did the Sixers.

"Once we step on the court against other teams, they'll realize we're a good team," he said. "They're starting to come in and give us tough games and we're pulling them out."

Game notes
The Sixers are 18-10 under DiLeo. ... Memphis held a 43-26 edge on the boards. The Sixers had not been outrebounded more than nine boards in any game this season. ... Miller had nine assists. ... The Grizzlies had only two fast-break points.

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