Pistons Surge Into Showdown With Nets With Fifth Straight Win


The Detroit Pistons are playing one of the biggest games of their season on Monday in Brooklyn against the Nets. That was why they were happy to get Sunday’s game out of the way quickly.

Playing at noon on the day after daylight saving time went into effect, the host Pistons scored 42 third-quarter points en route to a 131-107 win against the Chicago Bulls.

Detroit has won five in a row and 12 of 14 to take a half-game lead over the Nets for the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference.

Detroit finished the third quarter with a 103-80 lead, allowing Coach to Dwane Casey to rest Blake Griffin, Andre Drummond and Reggie Jackson for the entire fourth quarter.

“That was huge, because we’re playing in Brooklyn tomorrow and then we go to Miami,” Casey said. “We’re not in a position to use what they are calling load management to give our players a night off, so being able to sit them in the fourth is a bonus.”

Griffin (17 points), Drummond (9) and Jackson (8) combined for 34 of Detroit’s 42 points in the third. The Pistons outscored the Bulls by 17 points, hitting 57.7 percent of their shots, going 6 of 12 on 3-pointers.

Griffin finished with 28 points in 27 minutes. Jackson scored 21 points for Detroit and Andre Drummond added 16 points and 15 rebounds. Drummond has recorded double-doubles in 18 straight games, matching his career high. He is one short of Bob Lanier’s franchise record.

“I’ve said it over and over again during these 14 games,” Griffin said. “We’re playing basketball the right way. We’re making extra passes and we’re trusting each other. If you do that, you’ll eventually get hot.”

The Bulls have lost four of five, including twice to Detroit in three days. They played without Zach LaVine, who has a right patellar tendon strain. Wayne Selden led Chicago with 18 points.

TIMBERWOLVES 103, KNICKS 92 Taj Gibson scored a season-high 25 points, Jeff Teague added 20 points and 10 assists, and Minnesota won at home against the Knicks despite playing without the All-Star center Karl-Anthony Towns.

The Timberwolves were missing two of its top three scorers. Towns missed the game with right knee inflammation, and forward Andrew Wiggins sat out with a thigh contusion. It was the first game Minnesota played without both since April 16, 2014.

Derrick Rose, the T’wolves’ second-leading scorer, played just eight minutes, all in the first half, as Coach Ryan Saunders rested him against the team with the N.B.A.’s worst record.

Damyean Dotson led the Knicks with 26 points, shooting 10 of 19 from the field. Allonzo Trier added 15, Dennis Smith Jr. and Kevin Knox each had 13, and Mitchell Robinson had 8 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 blocks. Robinson posted a block in his 24th straight game, the longest streak for a Knicks rookie since Patrick Ewing’s 28-game run in 1985-86.

“We missed a lot of easy shots around the rim early on, and that really, really hurt us, especially on the road,” Knicks Coach David Fizdale said. “You can’t miss those.”

76ERS 106, PACERS 89 Joel Embiid had 33 points and 12 rebounds in his first game for Philadelphia in nearly a month, fueling a home win against Indiana.

Embiid returned to the lineup after being sidelined by a sore left knee. The Sixers went 4-4 without the All-Star center as they battle for a top-four seed in the Eastern Conference. The Sixers moved into a tie with Indiana for third place in the East.

Embiid was greeted with a rousing ovation in his first game since he took a flying leap over the actress Regina King on Feb. 13 in New York. Embiid had not played since he was on the court for 23 minutes in the All-Star Game, though the team has denied a link between playing in the game and his knee injury.

Early in the fourth, Embiid pump-faked from the top of the 3-point arc, drove the lane and was fouled as he tossed up a one-handed layup. Embiid extended his arms and pointed at himself, mouthing “I’m back” as Sixers fans went wild. He sank the free throw for an 83-74 lead and hit the bench to a standing ovation. Embiid cupped an ear toward the crowd, a signature move from the former 76ers great Allen Iverson.

SUNS 115, WARRIORS 111 Devin Booker scored 13 straight Phoenix points during a decisive fourth-quarter stretch and finished with 37, and the Suns snapped the N.B.A.’s longest active losing streak to one opponent at 18 games by winning at Golden State.

Phoenix beat the Warriors for the first time since Nov. 9, 2014, and earned its first road win 20 tries against the Western Conference this season.



Sahred From Source link Sports

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *