NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, February 8th (All times eastern)
San Antonio Spurs (42-8) at Detroit Pistons (19-32), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - San Antonio's grueling "Rodeo Road Trip" makes a stop in the Motor City Tuesday, when the Spurs meet the Detroit Pistons at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
The Spurs are forced out of the Alamo City every year at this time while the annual San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo takes over the AT&T Center. This year's version is scheduled to last 17 days, encompassing 8,965 miles as the Spurs visit nine different cities.
After losing the opener of the trek in Portland, San Antonio has bounced back with a pair of wins against the two-time defending champion Lakers and Sacramento. Tony Parker totaled 25 points last Friday as the Spurs kept rolling with a 113-100 win over the Kings, beating Sacramento for the 10th straight time.
Richard Jefferson added 16 points and Tiago Splitter came off the bench to post 16 and nine rebounds for San Antonio, which improved to an NBA-best 42-8 on the season, the best 50-game start in franchise history and the fifth-best start through 50 games in NBA annals.
The Spurs dominated the Kings just one night after Antonio McDyess tipped in a missed Tim Duncan jumper at the buzzer for an 89-88 victory over the Lakers.
DeJuan Blair tallied 10 points and 12 rebounds for San Antonio, which shot 57.1 percent from the field. Duncan ended with 12 points.
"To come here, against a team that has beaten the Lakers and New Orleans, that has played well, that's big," Jefferson said. "Young teams always get up for good team. And on a Friday night at (their) home, this was a situation where we knew we were coming into a difficult situation. We answered that call."
After tonight's contest, San Antonio, which is 17-6 as the visitor this season, will face off with Toronto, Philadelphia, Washington, New Jersey and Chicago before returning to south Texas.
The Pistons, meanwhile, are coming off their second straight win on Saturday when Tracy McGrady poured in 20 points and Richard Hamilton had a successful return for Detroit in an 89-78 win over Milwaukee at the Bradley Center.
That game was Hamilton's first game since Jan. 10 and he totaled 15 points on 7-of-14 shooting. Hamilton, who has been at odds with team management, missed the previous 13 contests with various ailments.
"I had no idea," Hamilton said about if he was going to play Saturday. "Yesterday I was inactive. I thought that was a sign of my last time ever playing in a Pistons uniform."
Tayshaun Prince tallied 12 points and 11 rebounds for the Pistons, who received 12 points from Ben Gordon.
The Pistons have won five of their past seven meetings with the Spurs at The Palace.
02/08 10:42:20 ET