NBA Game Summary - Detroit at Atlanta
(Wednesday, January 18th)
Final Score: Detroit 117, Atlanta 89
Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - Chauncey Billups scored 23 points and Richard Hamilton added 21, as Detroit embarrassed Atlanta, 117-89, at Philips Arena.
Rasheed Wallace and Maurice Evans each had 14 points for the red-hot Pistons, who have won five straight and 16 of their last 18 contests.
Ben Wallace added a game-high 18 rebounds and six blocks for Detroit, which connected on 54 percent of its shots, including an impressive 12-of-23 effort from three-point range. Wallace also eclipsed 7,000 rebounds and 1,500 blocks in his stellar career.
"They (Pistons) trust each other and I think veteran players have a tendency to trust their teammates more and when you have great trust in your teammates, you will go out and play with a lot more confidence," said Detroit head coach Flip Saunders.
The Pistons, who have won three straight as the visitor, are also now a sizzling 15-3 on the road this year.
Al Harrington had 21 points and 10 boards for the Hawks, who have dropped five of their last six contests. Salim Stoudamire contributed 17 points and Joe Johnson added 13 in the loss.
Detroit trailed 19-18 after one quarter, but the defending Eastern Conference champions blew the game wide open in the second period.
The Pistons scored the first two points of the frame to gain a one-point lead and never trailed again as Evans' three-pointer just past the midway point of the quarter stretched Detroit's edge to 10 points. Atlanta did close within 42-34, but the Pistons finished the half on a 17-6 surge to grab a commanding 19-point lead.
Evans had seven points during the barrage, including the final basket of the period, and Tayshaun Prince added five, as the Pistons went into the locker room with a 59-40 cushion.
"The biggest thing was just the second quarter," said Harrington. "One of the things was to limit their bench. If you watched the first quarter, we played right there with their starting five, but their bench came in there and they hurt us. Giving up 41 points in any quarter, you are not going to win the game unless you are going to score that many points also. We really lost that game in the second quarter."
Hamilton scored 15 points for Detroit, which hit on 25-of-45 shots in the first half. Harrington also netted 15 for the Hawks, who made a dismal 29 percent of their tries in the opening 24 minutes.
The Pistons continued to turn the game into a laugher in the third period when Prince's bucket midway through the stanza ballooned the lead to 75-46. Detroit led by as many as 31 points before holding an 82-60 edge after the period, and the Pistons coasted to the lopsided win in the fourth.
The 117 points tied a Pistons season high, previously set on November 5, 2005 against Toronto...Wallace now has 7,017 career rebounds and 1,500 blocks in his career...Zaza Pachulia had 11 points and 10 rebounds in the loss...Atlanta made only 34 percent of its shots...Detroit has won four straight games overall against the Hawks...The Pistons have also taken six consecutive meetings in Atlanta and have not lost in Philips Arena since December 7, 2002.
01/18 23:41:02 ET