The Detroit Pistons followed up three lackluster quarters with a dominant fourth, earning the defending NBA champions a spot in the second round.
Richard Hamilton scored 10 of his 23 points in the final quarter to lift the Pistons to an 88-78 victory over the visiting Philadelphia 76ers last night in Game 5 of their first-round playoff series. Detroit won the series 4-1 and next will play Indiana or Boston.
Detroit trailed for much of the game, but went ahead, 62-61, when Tayshaun Prince made the first basket of the fourth quarter. An 8-0 run gave the Pistons an 80-69 lead with 4 minutes 48 seconds left.
Allen Iverson scored 34 points, playing the last 10:56 after hurting his right ankle. He landed awkwardly after missing a shot and was crumpled on the court before being helped to the bench. He had his right ankle taped and was quickly back in the game.
Philadelphia's Chris Webber scored 11 points, and Samuel Dalembert had eight points in the first quarter but didn't score again until late in the game, finishing with 11 points.
Chauncey Billups scored 23 points for the Pistons, Prince had 14 and Ben Wallace added 11 points and 13 rebounds.
SUPERSONICS 122, KINGS 118: Ray Allen scored 30 points and Rashard Lewis added 10 of his 24 in the fourth quarter as host Seattle eliminated the Kings 4-1 and advanced in the playoffs for the first time since 1998.
Allen, coming off a 45-point performance in Game 4, was smothered by double teams all night, but the Sonics supported him with a solid team effort reflected by seven players scoring in double figures.
Reserve Nick Collison had 15 points and nine rebounds, and Antonio Daniels scored 14 points.
PACERS 90, CELTICS 85: Jermaine O'Neal scored 19 points and Stephen Jackson hit a big three-pointer as visiting Indiana took a 3-2 lead in its series.
Boston had whittled a 15-point, third-quarter lead to two after Paul Pierce's three-pointer made it 80-78 with 4:26 left. A basket by O'Neal made it 82-78 before Pierce sank a jumper. Then Jackson scored the last of his 15 points on a three-pointer with 2:38 remaining for an 85-80 edge.