NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, February 18th (All times Eastern)
Charlotte Bobcats (23-30) at Detroit Pistons (22-30), 7:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Detroit Pistons had a three-game winning streak snapped just before the break, but they'll try to keep playing hard under interim coach John Loyer Tuesday night when they welcome the Charlotte Bobcats to The Palace of Auburn Hills.
Detroit won three straight, but fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers, 93-89 Wednesday at The Palace.
The Pistons led throughout the contest, but Kyrie Irving took control late. He scored seven of his 23 points in the final 30 seconds to snap Detroit's winning streak.
"They controlled the game down the stretch," said Loyer. "You lead for 46 minutes, you expect to win the game."
Josh Smith scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds and Andre Drummond, who won MVP honors at the Rising Stars game Friday, added 16 points and 17 boards for Detroit.
Greg Monroe scored 16 points and had nine rebounds for the Pistons, while Will Bynum and Kyle Singler contributed 12 points apiece, the latter adding seven rebounds in defeat.
The Bobcats alternated wins and losses over their last six prior to the break.
The most recent decision was a 105-89 setback Wednesday night in Brooklyn to the Nets.
Kemba Walker scored 16 points to lead Charlotte, while Al Jefferson deposited a 12-point, 10-rebound double-double in the setback. Josh McRoberts added 13 in the defeat.
"We can't play games like this. We can't walk into an arena with low energy and have a guy make four 3's and get us in it. We have to have high energy and know what we're going to do," said Bobcats coach Steve Clifford.
These two teams will meet in Charlotte on Wednesday and the Bobcats play three straight at home before a brutal road swing where they visit the San Antonio Spurs, Oklahoma City Thunder and Miami Heat.
The Bobcats own a half-game lead over the Pistons for the eighth playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The Bobcats defeated the Pistons by 10 in Detroit on Dec. 20. That win halted a three-game losing streak against the Pistons.
The Pistons are 8-2 in their last 10 against the Bobcats, but Charlotte has taken two of the last three in Auburn Hills.
02/18 10:31:20 ET