NBA playoffs: Magic 91, 76ers 78
Associated PressORLANDO, Fla. ó Dwight Howard did so much damage to the Philadelphia 76ers he set off a coaching feud.
Howard had 24 points and a career playoff-high 24 rebounds, a dominating performance that powered the Magic to a 91-78 victory over the Sixers on Tuesday and gave Orlando a 3-2 series lead.
Afterward, Philadelphia coach Tony DiLeo said Howard should have been called for three seconds in the lane several times and asked the league to look into an elbow from Howard on Samuel Dalembert.
“Dwight Howard had a great game, and he’s a great player, but he just lives in the three-second lane on offense and defense,” DiLeo said. “I’m just saying he’s standing in the three-second lane on offense and defense. He’s a great player, and he doesn’t need any advantages.”
Magic coach Stan Van Gundy heard DiLeo’s remarks, took the podium and defended his star center by taking a shot at DiLeo.
“Am I supposed to come up here and talk about the game. Or am I supposed to come up here and lobby for the calls I want the next game?” Van Gundy said. “Is that what it’s about now? We’re supposed to lobby for the calls we want the next game? Let’s just play the games.
“I guess that’s the only reason Dwight’s having success in this series. It has nothing to do with the fact that he’s good.”
Howard had help.
Rashard Lewis snapped out of his playoff slump with a series-high 24 points, and Rafer Alston scored 14 for the Magic. But it was Howard’s fourth career playoff game with at least 20 points and 20 rebounds that carried the Magic.
Andre Iguodala scored 26 points and led a second-half charge that fizzled fast, and Andre Miller added 17 points for Philadelphia.
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