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Portland at Detroit

Billups, Pistons take advantage of Roy-less Trail Blazers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Chauncey Billups looked like he was gearing up for a big night.

Instead, he decided to enjoy the unusual role of cheerleader.

Billups took advantage of Brandon Roy's absence to score 17 points in the first quarter, then watched Detroit's young reserves finish off the Pistons' seventh straight victory, 91-82 over the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night.

"You know me -- it this had been a tight game, I would have stayed in there and stayed aggressive," said Billups, who didn't score in the final three periods. "But the kids were playing so well that it was more fun to sit on the bench and cheer for them."

Detroit led 27-18 after Billups' big first period, then blew the game open with Rasheed Wallace and four reserves on the floor. Rookie Rodney Stuckey, Billups' backup, had nine points and Amir Johnson added seven as Detroit outscored Portland 32-17 in the second.

"I think Sheed was the key to that -- he kept the other four guys calm and focused," Pistons coach Flip Saunders said. "Our point guards were great -- Chauncey and Stuckey combined for 26 points and six assists in the half, and that's pretty good production for 24 minutes."

Stuckey finished with a career-best 13 points and added four assists without a turnover.

"When I push the ball, I'm going to get some easy shots," he said. "That's what I do."

Roy missed the game due to a death in his family, but Portland coach Nate McMillan didn't think that excused the lopsided loss.

"Brandon's a big part of this team, but he's not the whole team," McMillan said. "They manhandled us. Chauncey set the tone offensive and defensively, and they pretty much had control of the game right from the start."

LaMarcus Aldridge led all scorers with 22 points, the same number he scored in a 102-94 home win over Detroit on Dec. 13. Jarrett Jack was the only other Trail Blazer to reach double figures, scoring 10.

"There is no excuse for not coming out with a sense of urgency tonight," McMillan said. "There will be times when Brandon is on the bench, and we still have to play offense and play defense."

With Wallace on the floor with Stuckey, Johnson, Jarvis Hayes and Arron Afflalo, the Pistons opened the second period with a 23-8 run on their way to a 50-36 halftime edge.

Johnson, Afflalo and Stuckey are all 23 or younger, and came into this season with a combined 11 games of NBA experience, so Stuckey expects the group to get better.

"We're just learning how to play with each other," he said. "We're going to be doing this together for a lot of years."

Detroit led by as many as 27 in the second half.

"It's embarrassing to get beaten like that," said the Blazer's Martell Webster, who replaced Roy in the starting lineup. "We had to pick up the slack for Brandon, pure and simple, and we didn't put forth the effort we needed."

Notes

  • Roy, who leads Portland in scoring, assists and steals, is also expected to miss Saturday's game in Indiana.
  • The Pistons' reserves outscored Portland's 28-4 in the first half.
  • Billups and Hamilton will both take part on All-Star Saturday in New Orleans on Feb. 16. Hamilton will make his debut in the 3-point shooting contest, while Billups will team up with Bill Laimbeer and Swin Cash in the Shooting Stars competition. The trio won the 2007 competition, but Cash was a surprising choice this year, since both she and Laimbeer have said she will not return to the Detroit Shock for the 2008 season.
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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Detroit's starters take it easy, opening the door for rookie Rodney Stuckey.  (Getty Images)
Detroit's starters take it easy, opening the door for rookie Rodney Stuckey. (Getty Images)

Scoreboard
Portland (28-21) 1817222582
Detroit (36-13) «2732221091
POR:L. Aldridge 22 Pts
POR:J. Przybilla 6 Reb
POR:J. Jack 5 Ast
DET:C. Billups 17 Pts
DET:R. Wallace 6 Reb
DET:C. Billups 5 Ast
Players of the Game
DetroitPortland

C. Billups

L. Aldridge
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
17152262
Portland
M. Webster, SG392-103-45247
J. Jack, PG364-72-245110
L. Aldridge, PF349-154-662122
S. Blake, PG313-100-03316
J. Przybilla, C243-40-06016
T. Outlaw, SF182-80-01024
C. Frye, PF143-42-24128
R. LaFrentz, PF122-41-12025
S. Rodriguez, PG120-42-21222
J. McRoberts, PF123-50-02106
T. Green, PG82-42-21206
D. Miles, SFDid Not Play
J. Jones, SFDid Not Play
B. Roy, SGDid Not Play
G. Oden, CDid Not Play
Totals 33-7516-1935181682
 44.0%84.2% 
Detroit
T. Prince, SF284-100-06319
C. Billups, PG246-122-315117
R. Hamilton, SG225-80-014110
A. McDyess, PF213-60-05236
R. Wallace, PF213-70-06229
A. Johnson, SF264-52-462410
A. Afflalo, SG262-30-02204
R. Stuckey, SG245-103-434113
J. Maxiell, PF222-42-25026
J. Hayes, SF202-61-22217
W. Herrmann, SF50-20-00010
P. Brezec, C10-00-00000
L. Hunter, SGDid Not Play
R. Murray, PGDid Not Play
C. Samb, CDid Not Play
Totals 36-7310-1537261791
 49.3%66.7% 
Other Games
LAL 117 Final
Orl 113
LAC 102 Final
Tor 98
NJ 104 Final
Char 90
Cle 100 Final
Atl 95
SA 99 Final
NY 93
Bos 88 Final
Min 86
Mem 81 Final
Dal 92
Sea 99 Final
Pho 103
Utah 104 Final
Sac 117
Wash 100 Final
Den 111