NBA Game Summary - Detroit at Orlando
(Friday, December 8th)
Final Score: Detroit 87, Orlando 83
Orlando, FL (Sports Network) - Chauncey Billups scored 31 points, shooting a blistering 11-of-16 from the field, to lead the Detroit Pistons over the Orlando Magic 87-83, in a battle of the two best teams in the Eastern Conference at TD Waterhouse Centre.
Richard Hamilton added 14 points and 10 rebounds for Detroit, which has won two straight to start a four-game road trip. Ronald Murray and Rasheed Wallace each had 13 points for the Pistons, who opened their trip with a 92-82 win in Dallas on Thursday night.
Dwight Howard celebrated his 21st birthday by scoring 25 points and grabbing 10 rebounds for Orlando, which has dropped three of four. Grant Hill added 12 points for the Magic, who had a six-game home win streak halted after leading for most of the game.
Down 80-77 more than midway through the fourth quarter, the Pistons embarked on their game-winning 10-2 run. Billups tied the game with just over 4:40 left with a three-pointer to start the run. Hamilton later broke an 82-82 tie with a baseline jumper with 1:24 left. Then, after a Magic turnover, Hamilton connected on a turnaround baseline jumper with 51 seconds remaining for an 86-82 edge.
Orlando failed to get anything positive on its offensive end following a time out. The Magic's Keith Bogans then blew a breakaway chance by losing the ball and then not getting a clean shot with under 20 ticks left.
Wallace hit 1-of-2 free throws on the other end for a five point lead and Orlando never made it a one possession game after that.
Orlando fell to 7-2 at home this season, losing for just the third time in its last 22 at home. The club was coming off a successful 4-2 road trip.
"That was a tough game to lose," said Orlando head coach Brian Hill. "It was unfortunate. It was the two top teams in the East going against each other right now, and unfortunately we didn't have an answer for Chauncey Billups and of course Rip (Hamilton) made a couple of big plays down the stretch."
Detroit, which didn't get to Orlando from Dallas until about 4:30 a.m., has won 10 of 12 overall.
"Right now, they are the best team in the Eastern Conference," said Billups of the Magic. "We knew they were going to come out ready and fresh. We were coming off back-to-back [games] so we knew they were going to try and knock us out of the game early. They made a quick run and we withstood that."
Orlando led 22-19 after one quarter, briefly fell behind 40-38 late in the second quarter when Murray hit a bucket, but responded to take a 44-40 lead into halftime.
The Magic also remained in front for most of the third quarter and carried a slim 67-66 edge into the fourth.
Orlando's Hedo Turkoglu left the game in the first quarter with a right ankle sprain and did not return...Detroit has won six of eight in Orlando...Including this game, 12 of the next 15 games are at home for Orlando.
12/08 23:06:20 ET