PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Allen Iverson limped noticeably, clutched his tailbone, grimaced and played through the pain. He's not sure if he'll do it again.
Iverson, who has a badly bruised tailbone, was noncommittal on his status for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals between the Philadelphia 76ers and Milwaukee Bucks.
"If it's not getting worse, I'll keep playing. If it's getting worse, (sitting out) is something you have to think about," Iverson said after scoring 16 points in Philadelphia's 92-78 loss Thursday night. "I don't want to hurt my team."
If Sixers coach Larry Brown had his way, Iverson would stay in Philadelphia as the series, tied at 1-1, shifts to Milwaukee for Game 3 Saturday.
"I'd like him to stay here, miss the next game, get three days' rest, but I'll get overruled on that one," Brown said. "Not a lot of guys in the league would keep playing, laying it on the line with the injury he has. But that's what he's about. He has incredible heart."
Iverson tried everything Thursday night. He drove to the basket, stopped and popped, shot 3-pointers. Nothing would fall.
The NBA's MVP and scoring champion missed 15 of his first 17 shots and finished 5-of-26, including 0-of-8 from 3-point range.
"I've had some tough injuries in my career, but this ranks up there as one of the toughest because it takes away most of my speed and the lift on my jump shot," Iverson said. "It's frustrating having to settle for jump shots."
Iverson has struggled since scoring 52 points against the Toronto Raptors in Game 5 of the conference semifinals. He's averaging 22.8 points on just 32-of-112 (29 percent) shooting in his last four games.
After missing his first nine shots in Game 1, Iverson finished with 34 points. But he never recovered after a horrible start Thursday.
Iverson missed 11 straight shots before hitting a running 10-footer midway through the third.
With Philadelphia desperately trying to get back in the game, Iverson missed consecutive jumpers that could have cut the deficit to 10 points early in the fourth. He went to the foul line on the next possession and missed one of his free throws.
"He can't move, and that's forced him to take a lot of jump shots," Brown said. "It's affecting his game."
It didn't help Iverson that Ray Allen forced him to expend a lot of energy on the defensive end. Allen scored 38 points, including 21 from beyond the arc.
"We know he's hobbled a little bit and now is the time to take advantage," Allen said.
Against the Raptors, Iverson became the only player beside Michael Jordan to score 50 points twice in a series. But he hasn't been the same since injuring his tailbone in Game 7 of that series.
Before this series, Brown said Iverson shouldn't be playing because of the injury. After Game 1, Iverson said he couldn't sleep because of the pain.
"He stands funny, he stands like an old man, holding his back and tailbone," Allen said. "I've always applauded his effort. He's out there for his team."
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