Turner leads 76ers over reeling Cavaliers 86-79
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — If Evan Turner strives for consistency over perfection, he could end up fulfilling the lofty expectations of a No. 2 overall draft pick.
Turner had 19 points, a career-high nine assists and six rebounds to lead the Philadelphia 76ers over the reeling Cleveland Cavaliers 86-79 Sunday night.
"Evan shows flashes," Sixers coach Doug Collins said after Turner's best all-around effort in the season's first 10 games. "I told him: 'Stop putting so much pressure on yourself.' Evan is a perfectionist. He works harder in the offseason than anybody else on the team. He puts a high ceiling on himself. I want him to enjoy playing."
Turner, a third-year pro, has finally settled into a steady role as the team's starting small forward. He was up-and-down over the first two seasons and started just 34 games.
"I want to play well, obviously," Turner said. "Other than that, it's normal."
Spencer Hawes and Jrue Holiday each added 14 points for the Sixers, who've won two straight and five of seven.
Alonzo Gee scored 17 and Anderson Varejao and Tristan Thompson had 14 apiece for Cleveland, which has lost six in a row. Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters combined for 14 points on 6-for-27 shooting. They came in averaging a combined 39.1 points, a league-best for a starting backcourt.
The Cavaliers had won eight of their last 10 games in Philadelphia, a stretch that began when LeBron James was the King of Cleveland.
For nearly three quarters, it seemed the Cavaliers would continue their successful run. But the Sixers started pulling away late in the third quarter.
Holiday hit a step-back jumper, Nick Young made a free throw and then his fastbreak slam gave the Sixers their biggest lead to that point, 61-55.
Jason Richardson's 3-pointer 3½ minutes into the fourth increased the lead to 69-59, but the Cavaliers went on a 14-6 run to pull to 77-75.