Bobcats 89, 76ers 83


CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Adam Morrison scored 17 points, and the Charlotte Bobcats overcame a pregame blunder that left them a man short and two more costly technical fouls to beat the Philadelphia 76ers 89-83.

Derek Anderson added 15 points and Raymond Felton had 14 points and nine assists for the Bobcats, who won their season-high third straight game despite losing backup point guard Jeff McInnis late in the first quarter thanks to a bizarre scoring mistake. The team turned in the wrong official roster before the game that did not include the newly acquired McInnis as an active player, leading to his ejection.

The Bobcats also blew a 17-point lead along with their cool. With the Bobcats clinging to a 79-76 lead, Morrison, upset over a traveling violation seconds earlier, was called for a technical foul. Official Kevin Fehr then immediately hit assistant coach John-Blair Bickerstaff with another technical.

Kyle Korver hit both free throws, and seconds later Samuel Dalembert’s dunk gave Philadelphia its first lead since the first quarter.

But Charlotte responded with a 6-0 run and Felton’s baseline jumper with 1:09 left gave Charlotte an 85-80 lead.

Willie Green scored 19 points and Korver added 15 points for the 76ers, who faltered down the stretch to lose for the fifth time in six games. The Sixers committed consecutive turnovers and missed three straight free throws in the final two minutes in a game that lived up to its billing matching the two worst teams in the Eastern Conference.

McInnis entered the game with 3:15 left in the first quarter and the 76ers called attention to the error eight seconds when a foul was called. McInnis, a Charlotte native playing in his first game in his hometown since the trade, was ejected and the Bobcats were called for a technical.

That left Felton as Charlotte’s only true point guard, as Brevin Knight missed his 12th game with a torn abdominal muscle.

But Charlotte immediately went on a 9-4 run to close the quarter. Morrison’s buzzer-beating 35-foot bank shot gave the Bobcats a 23-14 lead.

Charlotte built the lead to 17 in the second quarter with Anderson picking up the slack at point guard. The Sixers slowly cut into the lead, cutting the deficit to 67-62 entering the fourth quarter.

Anderson was 4-of-7 on 3-pointers and his 3 early in the fourth quarter put Charlotte ahead 72-64.

Notes: Dick Bavetta, in his 32nd season as an NBA official, said the only other incident he recalled that resembled McInnis’ ejection was when a team turned in two different rosters. That error was corrected before the game. … Bobcats F Gerald Wallace missed his fifth straight game since suffering a separated right shoulder, but took part in his entire pregame shooting routine and said he’s confident he’ll return soon. … Bobcats F Melvin Ely missed his third straight game with a strained right calf.

AP-ES-01-13-07 2156EST