MEMPHIS - The leadership of Andre Miller and the resilience of Andre Iguodala willed the 76ers to win a game they appeared certain to lose.
Iguodala's jump shot over Mike Miller as time expired gave the Sixers a 99-97 win over the Memphis Grizzlies last night at the FedEx Forum.
"I just wanted to get that shot off," Iguodala said. "I knew the clock was winding down, and it was so big because we needed this one."
As soon as he launched the 20-footer, Iguodala had a positive vibe.
"It felt good when I shot it and I had a similar shot at the five-minute mark and it went a little long," he said. "My other shots were going short, so I knew I just had to shoot it the regular way I usually do."
Miller scored 29 points - 27 of them in the first three quarters. Iguodala, who shot 2 for 12 and had six points through three quarters, added 17 in the fourth. During that final period, Iguodala shot 7 for 9 from the field and hit his only three-pointer.
Iguodala scored several times by going to the basket, which jump-started his offensive game.
"That got me going," he said. "I was relying on my jumper early in the game, so I decided to be more aggressive taking it to the basket."
The Sixers were down by 11 past the midway point of the third quarter and showed little signs of life. But Miller kept making one big play after another and the team trailed by just five entering the fourth period despite being soundly outplayed. In the third quarter alone Miller scored 13 points.
With an 11-0 run to start the fourth quarter, the Sixers took an 80-74 lead - their first lead of the night.
"The game was kind of getting away from us," Miller said, "and it was a weird game, but we kept it together, and as long as we got the win, that's all that counts."
Samuel Dalembert had nine points and 14 rebounds, and the Sixers got outstanding efforts off the bench from Kyle Korver and Thaddeus Young.
Korver scored 14 points and Young, who attended high school in Memphis, scored eight points playing in front of many family members and friends.
"We hung in there, chipped away - particularly in the fourth quarter - and our bench gave us life," Sixers coach Maurice Cheeks said.
After Korver made one of two free throws to give the Sixers a 97-95 lead with 15 seconds remaining, Pau Gasol tied the score at 97 on a lefthanded hook over Dalembert with 5.2 seconds left. Then came Iguodala's heroics.
The Sixers (11-16) snapped a two-game losing streak and return home to face Miami on Wednesday before embarking on a six-game trip.
For the first time this season, after 26 games, the Sixers had a new starting lineup. That's because Willie Green, who normally starts at 2-guard, was sidelined by a muscle strain. Rodney Carney started in his place.
Memphis (8-19), which earlier in the week beat San Antonio, was led by Gasol, who scored 31 points, shooting 13 for 20 from the field. Rudy Gay, who fouled out in the fourth quarter, and Mike Miller scored 19 points.
"Hopefully, this does a lot for our confidence," Korver said. "We don't want to be a team that turns it on all of a sudden in the fourth quarter, but we showed that it's possible."
The Sixers trailed, 52-47, at halftime. Young came off the bench to make all three of his shots in the half.
The Sixers became unglued in the third quarter, but they kept coming back. They trailed by 11 with less than six minutes to go in the quarter, but Andre Miller got them back in the game. Miller had a sensational third quarter, scoring 13 points while hitting 5 of 8 from the field.
Thanks to his play, the Sixers entered the fourth quarter trailing by only 74-69.