Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Iverson Shakes Up Orlando

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Iverson Shakes Up Orlando

Article excerpt

ORLANDO -- The NBA scoring champion took his show into the playoffs yesterday and overcame a bad case of pregame jitters.

"You got anything bigger than butterflies?" Allen Iverson asked, searching for the words to describe his anxiety. "I might have had a buzzard in my stomach."

Iverson scored 30 points yesterday in the first NBA playoff game of his career as the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Orlando Magic 104-90 in the opener of their best-of-5, first-round series.

Iverson said he slept poorly and woke up hourly, beginning at 5:30 a.m., in anticipation of the team's 9 a.m. breakfast. He's always nervous before a game, but said realizing a lifelong dream of appearing in the playoffs made yesterday especially gut-wrenching.

"I heard he got 15 minutes of sleep last night. That was 15 more than I expected," Philadelphia coach Larry Brown said.

"I think he handles situations like this pretty well," the coach added. "The only thing that I worry about is when he takes an individual challenge too much. …

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