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Detroit at Golden State

Pistons overcome 22-point deficit to keep Warriors winless

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

OAKLAND, Calif. -- One key to the Detroit Pistons' improbable victory at Golden State was written in bold red letters on the locker room's dry-erase board: "No small ball."

Indeed, nothing was small about the Pistons' stirring comeback from a 22-point deficit Wednesday night -- while missing two injured starters in their fifth game in seven days -- for a 111-104 victory.

Rasheed Wallace loomed large in the fourth quarter with 13 of his 22 points, and his inside play combined with the Pistons' zone defense to gradually turn the Warriors' small, speedy lineup into a disadvantage. Players on both sides agreed Detroit's victory could resonate through the season for both clubs.

"That was a great win, boy," said Chauncey Billups, one of the injured spectators. "That was crazy."

Tayshaun Prince and Richard Hamilton also scored 22 points apiece for the Pistons, who roared from behind without Billups and Antonio McDyess, who both got hurt in a loss to Portland on Tuesday night.

"Unlike last night, our guys really kept their poise and were never frantic in any situation," coach Flip Saunders said.

Though the Pistons fell behind early in a listless first half, Saunders still had a plan. While moving into a zone defense that broke the Warriors' offensive rhythm, Detroit ran more of its offense through Wallace in the low post, setting up mismatches and defensive mistakes all over the court.

The veteran Pistons should have been dragging, but instead the well-rested Warriors couldn't keep up.

"With playing last night and tonight, there was a lot of energy expended, but that's all right," said Wallace, who got within a few syllables of his first technical foul of the season during the rough first half. "Just executing, that's all it was. Wasn't a matter of taking over or anything."

Yet the Pistons did take over in a game that could demoralize the Warriors, the NBA's only winless team at 0-6.

Baron Davis had 29 points and 10 assists, but refused to speak to reporters after failing to hold off his club's embarrassing collapse. Even worse, the Warriors had the previous five days off before facing the exhausted Pistons.

"We had a tremendous amount of energy early on, (but) we got tired and slowed down in the second half," said Al Harrington, who had 20 points and eight rebounds. "It's disappointing. We haven't won a game yet, so they all look the same. They showed they were a veteran team. ... I didn't think they were going to stay in it."

The Warriors, confounded by Detroit's zone, blew most of their huge early lead in the third quarter. The Pistons took their first lead with a 14-2 run that included six consecutive points by Wallace, whose basket gave Detroit its first lead with 5:12 remaining.

Wallace, who had 18 points after halftime, followed up a 3-pointer from a step behind the line with two free throws, and Prince -- who went 11-for-15 from the field -- added four late points to seal it.

Andris Biedrins had 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Warriors, who have opened the season with four losses at home for the first time since 1998-99. Even the absence of suspended swingman Stephen Jackson can't explain Golden State's struggles at the start of a season that began with high expectations.

"I feel bad about this one," Warriors coach Don Nelson said. "I should have been able to help the team more than I was able to in the second half against that zone. We didn't attack it properly ... and as a result, it cost us the game."

Matt Barnes, who's playing with a broken bone in his right ring finger, had 12 points on 5-of-15 shooting. Golden State went 15-for-43 in the second half, including 5-for-21 on a series of irresponsible 3-pointers out of zone frustration.

Flip Murray had 15 points and tied his career high with 12 assists in Billups' point guard spot, while Jason Maxiell had 14 points and 14 rebounds at power forward. Billups injured his right hip and twisted his left knee in Portland, while McDyess reaggravated ligaments in his sprained left shoulder in the same game.

The Warriors scored a season-best 40 points in the first quarter, with Davis hitting four 3-pointers. Golden State led 59-37 late in the second quarter, but Detroit got within 13 by halftime before making a 21-10 run in the third.

Jackson sat out the sixth game of his seven-game suspension. After Golden State finishes its four-game homestand Friday night against the Los Angeles Clippers, Jackson will rejoin the club Sunday in Toronto.

Notes

  • C.C. Sabathia, the Cleveland Indians left-hander and a native of nearby Vallejo, celebrated his AL Cy Young award by watching the game from a seat under the basket with Florida Marlins pitcher Dontrelle Willis, an Alameda native. The Warriors gave jerseys to both players, with "CY YOUNG" stitched on the back of Sabathia's #07 jersey.
  • Warriors F Mickael Pietrus missed the game for personal reasons.
  • Golden State had another awful night at the free throw line, going 13-for-21 (61.9 percent).
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Rasheed Wallace leads the Pistons comeback with 13 of his 22 points in the fourth quarter.  (Getty Images)
Rasheed Wallace leads the Pistons comeback with 13 of his 22 points in the fourth quarter. (Getty Images)
Scoreboard
Detroit (6-2) «25263129111
Golden State (0-6) 40242119104
DET:R. Wallace 22 Pts
DET:J. Maxiell 14 Reb
DET:R. Murray 12 Ast
GS:B. Davis 29 Pts
GS:A. Biedrins 11 Reb
GS:B. Davis 10 Ast
Players of the Game
Golden StateDetroit

B. Davis

J. Maxiell
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
2931014145

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Detroit
J. Maxiell, PF445-94-6145314
R. Murray, PG416-121-2612215
R. Hamilton, SG389-204-554222
T. Prince, SF3711-150-233122
R. Wallace, PF318-184-493422
J. Hayes, SF132-40-02005
A. Johnson, SF111-21-24223
N. Mohammed, C100-01-22011
A. Afflalo, SG91-12-20014
L. Hunter, SG71-20-00113
C. Billups, PGDid Not Play
A. McDyess, PFDid Not Play
R. Dupree, SFDid Not Play
C. Samb, CDid Not Play
R. Stuckey, SGDid Not Play
Totals 44-8317-25453017111
 53.0%68.0% 
Golden State
K. Azubuike, SF486-171-264316
B. Davis, PG4512-241-2310029
A. Harrington, PF387-172-381520
A. Biedrins, C376-136-6112518
M. Barnes, SF315-150-076412
M. Ellis, SG252-42-42016
B. Wright, SF61-21-44003
P. O'Bryant, C50-20-03120
M. Belinelli, SG50-10-00000
A. Croshere, PFDid Not Play
T. Hudson, PGDid Not Play
M. Pietrus, SFDid Not Play
K. Perovic, CDid Not Play
S. Lasme, PFDid Not Play
Totals 39-9513-21442420104
 41.1%61.9% 
Other Games
Char 109 Final
Atl 117
Orl 117 Final
Cle 116
Ind 90 Final
Wash 103
Utah 92 Final
Tor 88
NJ 69 Final
Bos 91
Sea 104 Final
Mia 95
Phi 76 Final
NO 95
Mem 99 Final
Mil 102
Sac 103 Final
Min 108
Port 93 Final
Den 110
LAL 93 Final
Hou 90
NY 81 Final
LAC 84