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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Jrue Holiday scored 24 points and Andre Iguodala had 21 to help the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Milwaukee Bucks 94-82 on Monday and remain unbeaten at home.
Everything is going right for the Sixers this season. They’ve won three straight, nine of 10 overall and already hold a four-game lead over the second-place New York Knicks in the Atlantic Division. The Sixers are 6-0 at home.
Iguodala went 9 of 14 from the floor hours after he was chosen as part of the 20-player men’s Olympic basketball pool. Known as a lockdown defender, he surprised Tobias Harris with a block from behind late in the third.
Spencer Hawes, their 7-foot-1 center, buried his first two 3-pointers of the season in the third.
Andrew Bogut returned from concussion-like symptoms to lead the Bucks with 20 points and 11 rebounds.
Hawes finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds, and Lou Williams scored 17 points. The Sixers won without reserve guard Evan Turner, who sat out with a right quad contusion.
Williams cut off a late Bucks’ surge with a 3-pointer that stretched the lead to 83-71. Their top reserve, Williams entered as the Sixers’ leading scorer at 16.1 points per game. Six other Sixers averaged double-digit scoring, proving they don’t need a superstar to make them contenders in the Eastern Conference, just team-oriented basketball.
Coach Doug Collins calls the Sixers perhaps the most unselfish team he’s coached in all his years in basketball.
Check out the assist totals that go along with the points: Williams had six, Holiday five and Iguodala four.
Iguodala was rewarded for his defensive effort Monday when he was announced as one of the 20 players who will be candidates for the London Games. Iguodala, the ninth overall pick of the 2004 draft, has spent all nine seasons with the Sixers. He was the go-to defensive stopper for the U.S. team that won gold in the 2010 world championships.
“I think Dre’s got a great chance if he stays healthy,” Collins said. “He’s gotten off to a great start for us this year.”
While he’s carved a reputation as a stout man-to-man defender, Iguodala bested Harris late in the third. Stephen Jackson made a nice dish to Harris as he cut down the lane, but Iguodala was there to swat the ball against the backboard with his left hand.
Hawes stunned everyone in the third when he nailed a pair of 3-pointers after missing his previous four attempts on the season. His first one gave the Sixers a 67-54 lead, then he stepped back to end the third with his second straight for a 76-62 lead. It was that kind of game.
The Sixers made 11 of 23 3-pointers. With a hand in the lane, they forced the Bucks to shoot a step or two beyond their comfort range and into 3 of 14 3-point shooting.
One weak point for the Sixers had been slow starts, but they made 12 of 19 shots in the first quarter and rolled to an early 13 point lead.
Brandon Jennings (18.7 ppg) was limited to seven points and missed eight of 11 attempts and was outplayed by Holiday. With Jennings struggling to get going, the Bucks fell to 0-8 on the road.
Notes: The Sixers are off to their best home start since going 10-0 in 2002-03. … The Bucks failed to win three straight over the Sixers for the first time since 2005. … The Sixers won six games at home by holding all teams under 90 points.
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