NBA Game Summary - Indiana at Detroit
(Friday, December 29th)
Final Score: Indiana 93, Detroit 92
Auburn Hills, MI (Sports Network) - Darrell Armstrong knocked down a free throw with just .9 seconds remaining for his only point of the game, as the Indiana Pacers edged the Detroit Pistons, 93-92.
Jermaine O'Neal had a game-high 25 points and 13 rebounds for the Pacers, who have won four of their last five games overall. Al Harrington added 16 points and seven boards, while Stephen Jackson donated 15 points in the win.
O'Neal was probable for the game due to an illness, but came up big in Indiana's second straight win.
"I'm probably like 65 or 70 percent," O'Neal said. "I felt a lot better today than I have in the previous five days - I've been in the hospital and they didn't know what was wrong with me. They thought it might be like pneumonia, or the beginnings of it, but I'm bouncing back now."
Chauncey Billups had 23 points and a career high 12 rebounds for the Pistons, who have lost two straight on the heels of a five-game win streak. Billups, though, had to leave the game late because of a calf injury.
It was learned after the game that Billups will miss at least 10 days with the injury.
Richard Hamilton had 22 points in the loss. Rasheed Wallace netted six points with seven boards while being limited to just over 21 minutes because of an illness.
O'Neal hit 1-of-2 from the free throw line with 1:25 to go to put the Pacers up 89-83 before Detroit made a late run.
A tip-in by Antonio McDyess cut the Pistons' deficit to four before Billups' three from the left corner made it 89-88 with just 18 ticks left. Billups, though, came up holding his right calf and had to sit out the rest of the game.
"When I saw the rebound come out, I kind of went to plant and take off to go after it, I felt a pop in there a little bit," Billups said. "Carlos (Delfino) got the rebound. When I went to take off to shoot, I was like, I just can't move. So I hurt it before the shot.
"I knew it wasn't a cramp because I've gotten cramps before and I would have been able to come back," he continued. "We just have to monitor it and see."
Jackson hit two from the charity stripe moments later, but Hamilton answered with a layup to make it 91-90 with 10 seconds to play. Danny Granger was then quickly fouled, but he left the game open as he hit only 1-of-2 from the line.
Hamilton took over and drove the line, only to be fouled by Jackson, his sixth. Hamilton hit both his free shots to even things at 92-92 with three seconds remaining.
The Pacers tossed in a long inbounds pass to Armstrong, who managed to draw a foul out of Delfino. After missing his first free throw attempt, Armstrong made good on his second try with just .9 seconds to play.
"I've been in that position a couple times," said Armstrong. "The first one felt good, so I knew I was going to make the second one."
Wallace then attempted to throw the ball down court, but the inbound try ended up out of bounds to seal Detroit's fate.
Detroit had a three-game home winning streak snapped...O'Neal recorded his 16th double-double of the season...The Pacers posted 13 steals and have double-digit steals in six of their last 11 games...Jamaal Tinsley had 14 points and nine assists in the win...Tayshaun Prince had 10 points in the loss.
12/29 23:54:45 ET