For a change, though, the Pistons enjoyed a visit to Utah.
Center Andre Drummond and forward Greg Monroe both had
double-doubles, and Detroit ended its trip on a positive note with a
114-94 win over the Utah Jazz on Monday.
"I told them before the game, when you go on the road, especially a
building like this ... you don't want to be in an eight- to 10-down,
catch-up-type game," Detroit coach John Loyer said. "We had a really
nice start, and I think that set the tone."
Drummond finished with 19 points and 14 rebounds, Monroe contributed
18 points and 11 boards, and guard Rodney Stuckey added 19 points
off the bench as the Pistons snapped their five-game losing streak.
Detroit, which still has an outside shot at a playoff spot, earned a
rare win in the Beehive State after 10 consecutive setbacks at
EnergySolutions Arena. The Pistons (26-44) trail the eighth-place
Atlanta Hawks (31-38) by 5 1/2 games.
"(Winning in Utah) is very rare," Stuckey said. "I think we played
as a team tonight. ... This win was crucial for us. It's always good
to win. Winning cures everything. (We'll) go back home now, play
Cleveland Wednesday and try to get another one."
Utah shooting guard Gordon Hayward led all scorers with 32 points
and dished out a team-best six assists.
The Jazz, however, could not keep their momentum from a last-second,
89-88 win over the Orlando Magic on Saturday. Utah (23-48) suffered
its 12th defeat in 14 games.
"It was a disappointing loss," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said.
Detroit jumped ahead 9-2, forcing a visibly upset Corbin to call a
"We came off right from the beginning like we were running in mud,"
Corbin said. "I don't know if we were thinking about the other night
or what, but we've got to play with a lot more energy than we showed
The Jazz settled down for a while, pulling within 26-23 at the end
of the first quarter. However, Detroit dominated the second quarter,
outscoring the Jazz 34-17 and taking a 60-40 halftime lead thanks in
part to Drummond's 10-point period.
The Jazz, who own the worst record in the West, showed some life in
the third quarter after the deficit reached 25 points.
Forward Richard Jefferson scored eight of his 12 points, including
two 3-pointers, in a 13-1 Jazz run midway through the third quarter.
After the Jazz pulled within 76-64 a moment later, Detroit responded
with a 9-3 spurt that helped it take a 19-point lead into the fourth
"We didn't have the energy that we had the other night. It's kind of
disappointing," Jazz backup forward Marvin Williams said. "I think
we were trying to find it, but give Detroit a lot of credit. Every
time we made a push, they always had an answer."
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Utah was again without one of its top offensive players, as reserve
guard Alec Burks missed his second game with a sprained left ankle.
Williams scored 11 points and grabbed seven rebounds off the bench,
but the Jazz only got 17 points from their reserves.
Meanwhile, Detroit got a nice lift from its backups, with Stuckey's
contributions and 13 points from guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
leading a 45-point effort from the subs.
In a statistical sign of Detroit's domination, the Pistons outshot
the Jazz 55.4 percent to 41 percent and outrebounded Utah 53-33
while leading wire to wire.
"They outworked us. We were scrambling a little bit on the defensive
end, but we were a step slow on everything we did. They were quicker
to the ball," Corbin said. "At halftime, I knew they probably
doubled us (28-14 in rebounds) and then they beat us by 20 for the
game. We're a better rebounding team than that."
NOTES: Jazz G Trey Burke has a hard time understanding how some fans
would rather see the team lose to improve its lottery chances than
win games. "I think that's just selfish for a fan. We play hard,
practice hard every single day. Why would we want to go out there
and try to lose?" the former Michigan star said. "Wherever we do
land in the lottery, that will be great for us, but to try to tank
games and lose games, I think, is just absurd." ... Jazz SG Gordon
Hayward, an Indiana native, didn't fill out an NCAA bracket this
year. Why? "Butler wasn't in it," he said. "There's no Indiana
teams. I'm kind of out of it this year." ... Hayward admitted it is
hard for the Hoosier State, seeing as none of its 10 Division I
basketball programs participated in March Madness. "A lot of Indiana
people are (upset) about it. There's nobody to root for. Basketball
is supposed to be Indiana's sport. It was a tough year for them."
... Detroit leads the NBA in points in the paint with 52.6 per game
and outscored Utah 54-44 inside Monday. ... Pistons C Andre Drummond
is closing in on a franchise shooting record. Before his 9-for-10
night vs. the Jazz, he had a .619 field-goal percentage, putting him
on pace to break Detroit's single-season record. Dennis Rodman shot
.595 in 1988-89.
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