Sixers cool Heat


Published: Tuesday, January 25, 2005 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 25, 2005 at 1:00 a.m.
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Miami's Shaquille O'Neal defends against Philadelphia's Allen Iverson in the first half Monday.

The Associated Press
PHILADELPHIA - On an impromptu Philadelphia Eagles appreciation night, Allen Iverson hoped some of that championship magic rubbed off on the 76ers.
''It was something you always want to be a part of,'' Iverson said. ''That's the same thing with me. Just being able to try to get to the Finals and win it. That's the ultimate goal.''
Iverson had 45 points and 11 assists, leading the Philadelphia 76ers to a 106-98 victory over the Miami Heat on Monday night.
Samuel Dalembert added 16 points and 11 rebounds for the Sixers, who took over down the stretch in a matchup of Eastern Conference division leaders.
With Donovan McNabb, Terrell Owens and Brian Westbrook highlighting a group of Eagles watching courtside, the game was practically an afterthought for fans still in a frenzy over the Super Bowl.
All the Eagles received rousing standing ovations when introduced - the loudest for McNabb - and chants of ''E-A-G-L-E-S!'' filled the arena. The Eagles were the reason the game was moved to Monday night - it was originally scheduled for Sunday but was pushed back so it would not conflict with the NFC championship game.
Iverson came over at halftime and hugged McNabb, while Owens said he could return from his ankle injury to play in the Super Bowl against New England.
''Spiritually I've been healed and I believe that I'll be out there on that field Sunday, regardless of what anyone says,'' Owens said.
Shaquille O'Neal scored 24 points and Dwyane Wade had 17 points and 11 assists for the Heat.
A Super Bowl appearance is about the only thing that could overshadow a matchup of Shaq vs. A.I.
With the score tied at 83 midway through the fourth quarter, highlights of the Eagles season were shown on the videoboard and the fans got up again for another thunderous ovation.
''I kind of got goose bumps with the whole thing,'' Iverson said. ''I know it's a great feeling to be a part of that team and just to know you've got fans like that.''
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