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News » Pistons find their mojo

Pistons find their mojo

Pistons find their mojo
BOSTON -- Even as the losses continued to pile up, the Detroit Pistons maintained they still were one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference.

The past couple of games, they have played like it.

After a slow start to their five-game road trip, the Pistons closed it out with a pair of impressive wins, ending with Sunday's 105-95 victory versus the defending NBA champion Boston Celtics.

"We had a couple of stretches where they made some shots and we lost seven and eight-point leads a couple of times," Pistons coach Michael Curry said, "but I thought the way we were focused defensively and I thought the way we shared the Basketball on the offensive end was good."

Detroit (29-29) has won two in a row against two of the top three teams in the East.

Sunday's victory kept the Pistons from being swept by the Celtics for the first time since 1992.

"They had great fire tonight," Boston coach Doc Rivers said. "They didn't want to get swept by us."

Boston guard Stephon Marbury, the newest addition to the Celtics, said, "Those guys are playing for a playoff spot, for their respect. They came out ready to play from the beginning. They're a championship-caliber team as well. They're not just going to lay down."

But it was about more than avoiding a dubious streak.

It was about how the Pistons are starting to look as though they have finally figured out how to beat good teams consistently, even if that formula for success doesn't include Allen Iverson.

Iverson missed his second consecutive game with a sore back. An MRI came back negative. However, Iverson left Orlando on Friday bound for Detroit to have additional tests.

Iverson told Curry he was feeling better, but it still is unclear how much, if at all, Iverson will play Tuesday against Denver.

Although there were a number of times Sunday when Detroit's control of the game fell off, there was never a sense of panic or concern among the players that they wouldn't get the victory.

Hamilton said he wasn't surprised at how well the Pistons have played in the past two games.

"We got two games, two tough road games at that," said Hamilton, who had 25 points, nine assists and six rebounds. "We have to build off this. Guys played with a lot of energy, came out and did everything at both ends of the floor to get a win."

Detroit opened the game with an 11-2 run, but the Celtics regrouped in time to close out the quarter with a 16-5 run and led 22-20.

In the second quarter, the Pistons' bench stepped up.

Walter Herrmann scored all 11 of his points off the bench in the first half. Backup point guard Will Bynum had seven points and three steals in the first half.

Detroit's bench outscored its Boston counterparts, 30-21.

The Pistons took an eight-point lead into the half, but Boston wiped it out with a 12-0 run to start the third quarter.

After a Ray Allen lay-up put Boston ahead 66-63, Detroit finished the third with an 11-4 run to take a 77-70 lead going into the fourth quarter.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: March 3, 2009


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