NBA Playoffs Roundup : Bullets Shoot Blanks, 76ers Win
Charles Barkley scored 14 points in the fourth quarter Sunday at Philadelphia to lead the 76ers to a 102-97 victory over the Washington Bullets and even their playoff series at a game apiece.
The burly forward made sure the 76ers, who were outscored, 18-0, in the last 3:38 Friday night to lose by one point, didn’t repeat the performance. They still must win one of the games in Landover, Md., to have a chance to win the best-of-five series which resumes Tuesday.
The Bullets, with a great chance to put the 76ers, still without powerful center Moses Malone, in deep trouble, forged to an 88-81 lead with less than eight minutes remaining.
Barkley, who finished with 27 points and 20 rebounds, changed the momentum. Getting seven of his points as a result of offensive rebounds, Barkley drove the 76ers into the lead. A free throw by Cliff Robinson gave the Bullets a 97-96 lead with 2:38 left.
This time it was the Bullets who hit the cold spell. They didn’t score again. Barkley scored on a follow shot and so did Terry Catledge, a minute later. The final basket was a jumper by Sedale Threatt to beat the clock with 39 seconds left.
“I don’t make bold statements, I just speak the truth,” Barkley told the Associated Press. “We blew the first game. We choked. We made it a tough series, but if we play hard, I know we can beat them.”
The Bullets, beaten, 24-6, on the offensive boards in the opener, did better in this one, but lost control in the fourth quarter. For the game, the 76ers had 21 offensive boards, 10 by the 6-6 Barkley, the Bullets 15.
“The total numbers on rebounds might not be significant but it was down the stretch,” Coach Kevin Loughery said. “They are unbelievably great jumpers.”
Catledge, the rookie replacement for Malone, who has a broken bone under his eye, played a strong 37 minutes. He made 6-of-11 shots and had 18 points and 9 rebounds.
Manute Bol, the 7-7 Bullets’ center, blocked eight shots, but scored only eight points in 27 minutes.
Portland 108, Denver 106--With the man who would have been guarding him in traction in a Denver hospital, Kiki Vandeweghe drove the baseline for a basket, was fouled and converted the three-point play to give the battling Trail Blazers a split in Denver.
There was 1:18 remaining when Vandeweghe made the key play that gave Portland a four-point bulge. He scored seven of his 36 points in the stretch drive.
Rugged Bill Hanzlik, the 6-7 forward who does such a fine defensive job on high-scoring forwards, entered the hospital after Friday night’s game and will not play in the best-of-five series that resumes Tuesday at Portland.
“I had the poorest seat in the place for the shot,” Vandeweghe said. “I had the big guy (7-0 Blair Rasmussen) on me. I had him one-on-one and I should beat him. I was bumped and I shot. I got hit again, and I went down. I never saw it go in.”
Denver was again without injured center Wayne Cooper. Dan Schayes, who did such a good job in the opener, played 30 minutes and had only four points and six rebounds.
Milwaukee 111, New Jersey 97--Even the surprise appearance of New Jersey strongman Darryl Dawkins couldn’t prevent the Bucks from taking a 2-0 lead at Milwaukee in the best-of-five series.
Dawkins, out since March 9 because of a severe back problem, played 17 minutes, scored 10 points and had 3 rebounds.
Terry Cummings scored 28 points, 11 in the first six minutes of the second half when the Bucks broke the game open. The Bucks led by three at halftime, but stretched the lead to 85-71 after three quarters.
Joking about the trick his former aide, Dave Wohl pulled in using Dawkins after saying he wouldn’t, Coach Don Nelson of the Bucks said: “It just shows you that Wohl is a sneaky, dirty, carousing guy to pull something like that. He must have had a good teacher.”
Dallas 113, Utah 106--The big story in this playoff at Dallas is back spasms. Adrian Dantley, the sharpshooter for the Jazz has them and they are too painful for him to play.
Mark Aguirre, the Mavericks’ sharpshooter, also has them, but he is able to play.
Aguirre shook off the pain to score nine of his 27 points in the fourth quarter to assure the Mavericks a 2-0 lead in the series.
Rookie Karl Malone led the Jazz, but he and his teammates had another cold fourth quarter. They made only six of 17 shots from the field. In the two games Utah has scored only 35 points in the last quarter.