HOU
DET

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Drummond-less Pistons hold off Harden-less Rockets 108-101

DETROIT (AP) The Detroit Pistons have beaten several of the NBA's top teams this season.

Without James Harden, Houston might not qualify for that distinction - but it was still a nice victory for the Pistons after an awful loss the night before.

Tobias Harris scored 27 points, and the Pistons held on for a 108-101 win over the Rockets on Saturday night. Detroit lost 114-78 at Philadelphia the previous evening, but the Pistons used a strong third quarter to outlast Houston.

Detroit is only four games over .500, but the Pistons have beaten Golden State, Boston, San Antonio, Minnesota and now Houston. The Rockets are without Harden, but the Pistons were missing their own standout, with Andre Drummond sidelined because of a right rib contusion.

''We've sort of been up and down,'' Detroit coach Stan Van Gundy said. ''It's a good thing on a night like tonight. It's a bad thing on a night like last night. It's just a little too up and down. We need to be more consistent in what we do.''

As usual, Houston relied heavily on 3-point shooting. The Rockets went 7 for 13 from beyond the arc in the first quarter, but were only 8 for 34 after that.

''I don't know if that was the performance of a tired team or what happened there,'' Houston coach Mike D'Antoni said. ''We're short-handed right now, and it seems like we are always playing our third game in four nights. We just never really had any intensity on defense, even when our offense was flowing.''

Detroit was the more efficient team from 3-point range, going 12 of 25.

Chris Paul had 16 points and 13 assists for Houston. Ish Smith scored 17 points for Detroit, and Dwight Buycks added a career-high 16.

There were eight lead changes and six ties in the first half, and Houston led 58-57 after two quarters. Detroit then outscored the Rockets 31-19 in the third. A dunk by Harris put the Pistons up 72-65, and Reggie Bullock's 3 near the end of the period made it 86-72.

Houston rallied late and cut the deficit to four with 15.5 seconds left, but Smith made two free throws for Detroit at the other end.

TIP-INS

Rockets: Harden is out with a hamstring strain. Houston was also without C Nene, who has a bruised right knee.

Pistons: In addition to Drummond, Detroit was without G Reggie Jackson (sprained right ankle) and F Stanley Johnson (strained right hip flexor). ... Eric Moreland replaced Drummond at center for the first start of his career and set career highs with eight points, four assists and 36 minutes.

TURNAROUND

Detroit is 5-2 in the second game of back-to-backs after going 3-14 last season. The Pistons had reason to be ready Saturday.

''It was tough in Philly last night,'' Bullock said. ''It was a lot of shots going in and out. Obviously, we missed a lot of defensive assignments, but tonight, we came back hungry.''

TOUGH STRETCH

The Rockets went 4 for 21 from long distance in the second and third quarters.

''Once we hit a lull in the second half, we were never able to regain our offensive flow,'' said guard Eric Gordon, who scored 15 points. ''That's a solid team, even with the guys they are missing, and they didn't let up on us once we stopped making shots.''

QUOTABLE

Van Gundy isn't thrilled with how backup center Boban Marjanovic is being officiated. At 7-foot-3, Marjanovic can be tough to defend, and he had 10 points on 4-of-8 shooting.

''His size, they just officiate the game differently. They do,'' Van Gundy said. ''If he pushed and shoved guys and held guys the way they're able to do to him, it would be a foul every time.''

UP NEXT

Rockets: Visit the Chicago Bulls on Monday night.

Pistons: Visit the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night.

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Key Players
C. Paul
3 PG
A. Drummond
0 C
32.6 Min. Per Game 32.6
14.1 Pts. Per Game 14.1
3.8 Ast. Per Game 3.8
14.9 Reb. Per Game 14.9
45.2 Field Goal % 53.3
44.8 Three Point % 53.3
92.6 Free Throw % 63.0
  Defensive rebound by Tarik Black 0:03
  Tobias Harris missed 2nd of 2 free throws 0:06
+ 1 Tobias Harris made 1st of 2 free throws 0:06
  Personal foul on Chris Paul 0:06
  Defensive rebound by Tobias Harris 0:06
  Gerald Green missed 3-pt. jump shot 0:06
  Offensive rebound by Tarik Black 0:09
  Eric Gordon missed 3-pt. jump shot 0:12
+ 1 Ish Smith made 2nd of 2 free throws 0:14
+ 1 Ish Smith made 1st of 2 free throws 0:14
  Personal foul on Eric Gordon 0:14
Team Stats
Points 101 108
Field Goals 38-90 (42.2%) 38-75 (50.7%)
3-Pointers 15-47 (31.9%) 12-25 (48.0%)
Free Throws 10-11 (90.9%) 20-27 (74.1%)
Total Rebounds 48 49
Offensive 12 5
Defensive 30 30
Team 6 14
Assists 29 21
Steals 5 8
Blocks 4 4
Turnovers 13 11
Fouls 20 15
Technicals 1 2
16 PTS, 7 REB, 13 AST
27 PTS, 8 REB, 1 AST
1234T
away team logo Rockets 27-11 37211924101
home team logo Pistons 21-17 31263120108
Team Stats
away team logo Rockets 27-11 104.9 PPG 43 RPG 18.8 APG
home team logo Pistons 21-17 PPG RPG APG
Key Players
C. Paul PG 18.6 PPG 5.4 RPG 7.9 APG 46.0 FG%
T. Harris SF PPG RPG APG FG%
Top Scorers
C. Paul PG 16 PTS 7 REB 13 AST
T. Harris SF 27 PTS 8 REB 1 AST
42.2 FG% 50.7
31.9 3PT FG% 48.0
90.9 FT% 74.1
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
C. Paul 35 16 7 13 2 0 5 2 5/10 3/8 3/3 1 6 46 0
E. Gordon 34 15 3 7 0 0 2 2 6/13 3/7 0/0 0 3 30 -6
T. Ariza 34 15 4 1 0 0 0 2 5/15 2/9 3/3 0 4 21 -5
C. Capela 27 14 11 0 0 2 3 2 7/15 0/0 0/0 6 5 24 -15
R. Anderson 23 5 3 2 0 0 0 1 2/9 1/6 0/0 1 2 12 -24
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
C. Paul 35 16 7 13 2 0 5 2 5/10 3/8 3/3 1 6 46 0
E. Gordon 34 15 3 7 0 0 2 2 6/13 3/7 0/0 0 3 30 -6
T. Ariza 34 15 4 1 0 0 0 2 5/15 2/9 3/3 0 4 21 -5
C. Capela 27 14 11 0 0 2 3 2 7/15 0/0 0/0 6 5 24 -15
R. Anderson 23 5 3 2 0 0 0 1 2/9 1/6 0/0 1 2 12 -24
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
G. Green 28 15 3 0 0 0 0 0 5/14 4/12 1/1 0 3 18 -9
T. Black 20 13 6 0 0 1 2 5 6/6 0/0 1/2 3 3 18 +8
B. Weber 11 5 1 3 2 1 0 3 1/3 1/1 2/2 0 1 15 -2
P. Tucker 24 3 4 3 1 0 1 3 1/5 1/4 0/0 1 3 13 +18
L. Mbah a Moute - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
B. Brown - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Harden - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Jackson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
C. Onuaku - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Z. Qi - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Williams - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Nene - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 236 101 42 29 5 4 13 20 38/90 15/47 10/11 12 30 197 -35
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
T. Harris 32 27 8 1 1 0 0 0 8/15 3/6 8/11 0 8 38 0
I. Smith 25 17 3 4 2 0 0 2 7/12 0/1 3/4 0 3 30 +2
R. Bullock 33 14 2 2 0 0 0 2 5/6 3/4 1/2 1 1 20 -1
A. Bradley 39 12 1 3 1 0 2 3 5/15 2/7 0/0 0 1 18 +5
E. Moreland 35 8 8 4 2 1 1 1 3/5 0/0 2/2 2 6 26 -2
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
T. Harris 32 27 8 1 1 0 0 0 8/15 3/6 8/11 0 8 38 0
I. Smith 25 17 3 4 2 0 0 2 7/12 0/1 3/4 0 3 30 +2
R. Bullock 33 14 2 2 0 0 0 2 5/6 3/4 1/2 1 1 20 -1
A. Bradley 39 12 1 3 1 0 2 3 5/15 2/7 0/0 0 1 18 +5
E. Moreland 35 8 8 4 2 1 1 1 3/5 0/0 2/2 2 6 26 -2
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
D. Buycks 22 16 2 2 0 1 4 2 5/9 4/5 2/2 0 2 19 +5
B. Marjanovic 11 10 5 1 0 2 3 2 4/8 0/0 2/4 2 3 16 +8
A. Tolliver 15 4 1 1 0 0 0 2 1/3 0/1 2/2 0 1 7 +8
L. Kennard 23 0 5 3 2 0 1 1 0/2 0/1 0/0 0 5 12 +10
J. Leuer - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Jackson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Drummond - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
L. Galloway - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
S. Johnson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
L. Montero - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
H. Ellenson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 235 108 35 21 8 4 11 15 38/75 12/25 20/27 5 30 186 +35