NBA Game Summary - San Antonio at Detroit
(Sunday, March 20th)
Final Score: Detroit 110, San Antonio 101
Auburn Hills, MI (Sports Network) - Chauncey Billups scored 25 points and handed out six assists, as the Detroit Pistons defeated the San Antonio Spurs, 110-101, at The Palace.
San Antonio All-Star forward/center Tim Duncan was forced to leave the game early in the first quarter with a severely sprained right ankle. He suffered the injury after he landed on the foot of Detroit's Rasheed Wallace following a basket. Duncan had to be helped off the court and was taken for X-rays, which came back negative. He will be further evaluated and is expected to miss at least two games.
"It's the same ankle that he sprained a couple weeks ago, but this was much worse," said Spurs coach Gregg Popovich. "It's going to be a while."
Tayshaun Prince collected 22 points and eight rebounds for the Pistons, who have won five in a row overall and 12 straight at home. Wallace netted 15 points and Carlos Arroyo added 13 for Detroit.
The Pistons' Richard Hamilton had 11 points in 28 minutes. However, he suffered an ankle injury midway through the third quarter and played sparingly the rest of the way.
Devin Brown paced the Spurs with 18 points. Beno Udrih finished with 15 points and Manu Ginobili chipped in 14 for San Antonio, which had a three-game winning streak halted. Ginobili had missed the last five games with a groin injury.
Brown's three-pointer with five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter pulled the Spurs within 94-92.
It was still a two-point game, before Billups converted a three-point play with 2:21 left to give the Pistons a 102-97 lead. After a series of missed shots, Billups scored on a tough shot inside to stretch the margin to seven with only 58.8 seconds left.
Udrih then missed a three-point shot and Ben Wallace grabbed the rebound and was fouled. Wallace proceeded to hit 1-of-2 free throws with 52 seconds remaining to make it 105-97. Prince added two more foul shots a few seconds later to seal it.
"They still have a great team (without Duncan)" said Arroyo. "I think we did a great job tonight. We helped each other out at the end and Tayshaun did a great job in the last quarter."
Detroit closed the first quarter with a 7-2 run to tie the contest at 31-31 after 12 minutes.
The game was still tight midway through the second quarter, before the Pistons went on an 18-6 spurt, keyed by six points from Billups, to take a 60-50 advantage.
Detroit eventually carried a 62-52 lead into the locker room. Billups ended the first half with 14 points, while Tony Parker scored all 12 of his points in the opening 24 minutes to lead San Antonio.
The Spurs battled back in the third quarter, cutting the deficit to 69-66 on two free throws by Brown midway through the period.
Hamilton then responded with a three-pointer to push the margin back to six and the Pistons later held an 81-76 edge after 36 minutes.
Detroit improved to 4-0 since head coach Larry Brown left the team to undergo more surgery related to the hip procedure he endured earlier in the season...The Pistons have captured 14 of their last 18 contests...It marks the first 12-game home winning streak for Detroit since the 1990-91 campaign...Rasho Nesterovic and Nazr Mohammed each scored 13 points for San Antonio...The Spurs lost for the first time in nine games against the Central Division this season.
03/20 19:05:26 ET