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Guards spark Knicks in easy win over 76ers

Oct 25, 2006 - 2:23 AM NEW YORK (Ticker) -- New York Knicks fans wanting to see Stephon Marbury duel Allen Iverson will have to wait 'til next year.

As the star guards took the night off, Steve Francis, Jamal Crawford and Nate Robinson picked up the slack for Marbury as the Knicks cruised to a 113-102 preseason victory over the Philadelphia 76ers.

Marbury was taken fourth in the 1996 draft, three picks after Iverson. Although Marbury has played on four teams and Iverson has spent his entire career with the 76ers, the two have had some terrific matchups, with Marbury's strength countering Iverson's speed.

Marbury sat out with a sore right foot and Iverson was sidelined with a sprained left hand. The Sixers do not return to Madison Square Garden until January 10, 2007.

Francis started at point guard and had 13 points and seven assists, piloting an offense that shot 55 percent (43-of-78), including 13-of-24 3-pointers. Crawford and Robinson scored 19 points each, combining to make 13-of-22 shots. Quentin Richardson added 12 points and rookie guard Mardy Collins added 11.

The Knicks held a 44-36 lead before going on an 8-0 run as Robinson and Richardson hit back-to-back 3-pointers and rookie Renaldo Balkman added a layup.

Without Iverson, the Sixers did not get much from their backcourt. Willie Green scored two points on 1-of-11 shooting and Rick Brunson did not score.

Chris Webber and Kyle Korver scored 17 points apiece for Philadelphia, which shot 52 percent (40-of-77) but was outrebounded, 39-29.

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