Brown: 'It was a remarkable performance'
PHILADELPHIA Eric Snow limped into the First Union Center
on a fractured ankle, traded his designer suit for a uniform and
put his name among some legendary performers.
Hours after learning he had another fracture in his
surgically-repaired right ankle, Snow scored 18 points, including
two crucial baskets in the final minutes, as the Philadelphia 76ers
beat the Milwaukee Bucks 89-88 Wednesday to take a 3-2 lead in the
Eastern Conference finals.
Snow's teammates still can't believe he even played, let alone
won the game.
"You are Willis Reed junior," Dikembe Mutombo told Snow after
he finished speaking to reporters Thursday.
Sixers coach Larry Brown actually has played the video of Reed
hobbling out of the tunnel to play in Game 7 of the 1970 NBA Finals
for his team.
An injured Reed came out of the dressing room after warmups and
hit the first two shots of the game for the New York in what became
a runaway victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.
Before Wednesday's game, Brown also popped in a tape of Kirk
Gibson limping out to hit a game-winning homer for the Los Angeles
Dodgers against Oakland's Dennis Eckersley in Game 1 of the 1988
"You understand what coach is trying to get across," Snow
said. "Basically, he's saying, 'By any means necessary.'
"A lot of the younger guys didn't realize they were the only
two shots Willis Reed made, but it was such an emotional lift for
the team and the fans, maybe it gets more out of everybody else. I
can't be compared to Willis Reed."
Snow had a pin inserted into his right ankle in December, missed
32 games and has been hampered by the injury ever since. During the
conference semifinals, Snow's ankle limited his effectiveness to
the point he told coaches to bench him.
Snow then sustained a new fracture on the inside part of the
ankle when he stepped on Sam Cassell's foot late in the first half
of Game 4 on Monday.
A surgeon and the team doctor told Snow he risks breaking the
screw or further displacing the fracture by playing. Against his
wife's wishes, Snow did it anyway.
"My wife still is upset with me," Snow said. "She said I
didn't tell her the whole truth. She talked to the doctors after
the game and I worded it a little wrong. She said 'Good game,' but
that was over quick."
Snow, who scored 20 points in the first four games of the
series, shot 7-of-9 Wednesday, nearly duplicating his series output
in one game. He wore a protective boot on the foot Thursday and
said his status for the remainder of the playoffs will be made
before each game.
"It was a remarkable performance under the circumstances,"
Brown said. "I think everybody on the team respected him for just
going out there and playing and then to have the impact on the game
that he had was remarkable when you consider that he took the
responsibility for the third game solely on his shoulders which I
didn't buy that."
With Allen Iverson sidelined by a badly bruised tailbone, Snow
played 40 minutes in Philadelphia's 80-74 loss in Game 3. He shot
just 1-of-11, missed four free throws and scored four points.
But his performance in the Game 5 helped overcome a 5-for-27
shooting night by Iverson, who still is bothered by the tailbone
"It's a matter of heart," said Mutombo, who is playing with a
broken pinkie. "These guys have goals and determination. They know
where they want to go and where they want to be. They don't care
regardless of what's happened to them." Send this story to a friend | Most sent stories
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