NBA Game Summary - Indiana at Detroit
(Sunday, January 28th)
Final Score: Detroit 95, Indiana 87
Auburn Hills, MI (Sports Network) - Richard Hamilton scored 21 points as the Detroit Pistons held on to beat the Indiana Pacers, 95-87, at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
Rasheed Wallace had 20 points, seven rebounds, five blocks and three steals while Chauncey Billups posted 17 points and six assists for the Pistons, who have won four of their last five.
Chris Webber, playing in his sixth game since signing with Detroit, also scored 17 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
"Even if I'm not over the rim and dunking, I think my production can be the same," said Webber. "I was fortunate to watch Karl Malone and some other guys when they got older and they got harder to check. I definitely think I'm a smarter player. I wish I had the mentality I have now when I had the physical attributes."
The win also gave Pistons head coach Flip Saunders the 500th victory of his career.
"It's great," said Saunders. "I guess I'll have a piece of cake somewhere tonight."
Jermaine O' Neal had 26 points, 12 boards and five blocks and Jamaal Tinsley added 18 points and seven assists for the Pacers, who saw their season-high three-game winning streak come to an end.
The Pistons looked as if they would cruise to an easy victory with a 16-point lead late in the third quarter. Indiana, however, did not go down quietly. Sparked by an O' Neal jumper, the Pacers scored seven straight to pull within 72-64 with 37 seconds left in the third and trailed 74-65 heading into the fourth.
Then, trailing 76-67, the Pacers went on a 12-3 run and tied the game at 79-79 on Darrell Armstrong's three with 5:56 left in the quarter. Detroit, though, responded with 10 straight points, capped by Billups' two free throws that gave the Pistons an 89-79 lead with 2:09 remaining.
The Pacers answered back as O'Neal hit two from the charity stripe before Tinsley hit a free throw and then converted a three-point play to bring Indiana within 91-87 with 37.1 seconds left. However, Webber responded with a layup and O'Neal was called for traveling on Indiana's next possession as Detroit held on for the win.
"It's a 48-minute game and that's something that we have been working on," said O' Neal. "We say that if we can get within 10 going into the fourth quarter we have a chance to win. We made plays and then we kind of ran out of steam late in the game. But tip your hat to those guys. They made plays, too."
The first half was a tale of two quarters, as Detroit dominated the opening 12 minutes before the Pacers responded to cut their deficit to 47-43 at the break.
A 14-2 run midway through the opening quarter helped the Pistons to grab a 27-12 lead at the end of the first. Then, with Detroit leading 35-20 early in the second, Indiana outscored the Pistons 21-9 over a seven minute stretch to pull within 44-41 with just 51.9 seconds left in the half. Jason Maxiell then hit 1-of-2 free throws with .2 ticks left on the clock to give Detroit a 47-43 lead heading into the locker room.
Antonio McDyess had 13 points and 11 rebounds for the Pistons...Danny Granger scored 13 points for the Pacers, while Troy Murphy contributed 10 boards.
01/28 23:05:29 ET