A thriller in Denver, Pistons steal one 93-90.
The Pistons won their first game against their old friend Chauncey Billups in Denver. With Denver leading the entire game it was Tayshaun Prince’s hook in the lane with 20 seconds on the clock that gave the Pistons their first lead of the night. Tayshaun started it and Arron Afflalo’s clutch free throws to end the game sealed it.
- Chauncey was at his finest with a game-high 30 points on 11-for-19 shooting with 4 assists and just one turnover. Rodney Stuckey tried to keep up but a sore back held him to just 30 minutes and nine points. Miss Chauncey? I do, but it’s clear he’s doing well with his new team, taking them places they haven’t been in quite some time.
- Billups had 20 points by halftime and 26 at the end of three quarters. That’s when Prince told Pistons coach Michael Curry he wanted to guard Billups down the stretch. Billups managed just four points in the fourth quarter as Prince’s long arms and size bothered the hot-shooting Billups.
- “There was nobody on the court at the time that knows Chauncey’s game like me,” Prince said. “When you have a 6-foot-9 guy like myself that’s pretty quick off my feet, I’m able to contest Chauncey’s three, plus keep enough space because he’s so fast where I can back up a little bit.” Via The Detroit Free Press
- Had Chauncey been as hot down the stretch as he was to start, no way the Pistons win this one. Also thank Detroit’s defense for clamping down on Billups so he had to defer to Smith who turned over the ball on a Antonio McDyess strip.
- Arron Afflalo was the hero, not only did he put up 17 points, it was his 8 straight free throws made at the end of the game when Denver sent him to the line that truly won this game for Detroit. Thanks Aflac!
- Best game coached by far all season long for Curry. Shorthanded, a sore Stuckey and a hot Billups. We have to give him props sometimes.
- It’s about time Detroit was on the other end of losing a big lead and the game. Denver led basically all game with their biggest lead at 13.
- Give it up for Allen Iverson who was ice cold in the first half, but turned it up in the second. He finished with 23, 20 of them came in the second half.
- Allen Iverson highlight of the game.
- Close call when Iverson tried to stop smith with .07 left on the clock and sent him to the line for three foul shots when the Pistons led by three. Thankfully Smith missed the first one.
- “I told my teammates that once we got to Utah, they would probably have to board up my windows and take all sheets out of my room because I would have killed myself if we had lost the game seeing I gave J.R. those three shots like that,” Iverson said. Via Yahoo/AP.
- Jason Maxiell finally got some playing time and he didn’t disappoint. Nine points, a blocked shot and 7 boards in 20 minutes. And some SERIOUS DUNKS…none bigger than the one that came late in the game.
- If you were watching you probably wanted to kill Detroit for making just 27 of their 40 free throws. Had Arron not made the free throws at the end of the game, they would have lost because of their blunders at the line. Ironically, they won it at the stripe.
- FSN Highlights of the game by quarter.
- I don’t know about you, but this was clearly one of the best games of the year. Playoff excitement and a victory, you couldn’t ask for much more. Especially shorthanded. Dare I ask for an win in Utah?
- The Denver fans gave it to Antonio McDyess every time they got the chance by booing him for not playing for Denver after the trade. Dyess didn’t seem to care, in fact he was happy to hear it.
Video Courtesy of The NBA, The Detroit Pistons and FSN Detroit
- Another key to the victory was Antonio McDyess, who may not be filling up the bucket but he’s doing everything else we need him to. McDyess put up 6 points with 12 boards and 2 key steals in 23 minutes on the floor. Sorry Denver…he’d rather retire than play for you.
- Rebound war won 46-38.
- Rip is almost on his way back.
- 8 boards and 1 blocked shot for Kwame Brown in 23 minutes.
- Solid 22 minutes for Amir with 6 points and a block. He’s hustling out there but maybe the fact that Sheed has been out of the lineup hinders him because of his size.
- Stuckey is doubtful for Utah.
- Tayshaun was huge, 19 points on 7-for-15 shooting with six boards and 4 assists. It was his runner with 20 seconds on the clock that put Detroit in the lead for the first time of the game. His defense on Billups was another reason why Tay was the player of the game.
- The Pistons have now won 5 straight against the Nuggets.
- Clutch late game back-to-back threes for Tay and Iverson to get Detroit in a place to take the game.
- I don’t know if the noise was for Iverson or the Pistons, but I heard tons of fans in Denver cheering for the Pistons.
- 10 turns for each team.
- A little odd for Chauncey – “It was a little strange,” Billups said. “There were a couple of times in the third quarter when I kept looking up at the clock. We were up and for some reason I kept thinking we were down because I kept looking at the Pistons’ score. It was just kind of weird.” Via The Detroit News
- Detroit had the Nuggets playing their game, limiting their running to help Detroit stay relatively close all game long.
- 36 points in the paint for Detroit to 42 for Denver.
- Great game, I’m still a bit giddy today.
- Utah…..tonight at 9:00 PM
- Worst stretch of injuries in years right now – what’s going on, Arnie? Has our age finally caught up with us?
- The Detroit News asked Rip about his return!
“Hamilton, speaking informally before the game, was clearly not keen on coming off the bench. When asked what he thought would happen once he got back healthy, he said he planned on returning to the starting lineup.
“That’s the only option,” he said.
When it was suggested that coming off the bench might be another option, he said, “That ain’t happening”So much for taking one for the team!…..(Thanks to Mark in the Comments for this one!)