Notebook: Pistons 108, Blazers 101



Posted Nov 26, 2012 11:05 PM

By Dana Gauruder, For NBA.com

THE FACTS: Detroit's second-year point guard, Brandon Knight, outplayed Portland rookie sensation Damian Lillard as the Pistons downed the Trail Blazers 108-101 Monday night at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Knight had a season-high 26 points while holding Lillard to 12, tying his season low, on 4-for-18 shooting. Greg Monroe had 20 points and 10 rebounds as the Pistons (4-11) won their third straight home game. LaMarcus Aldridge had a season-high 32 points for the Blazers(6-8), who lost for the second time in as many days at the start of a seven-game road swing.

QUOTABLE: "You always want to take care of your home court. When teams come here, they have to know they're going to be in for a fight and play close to a perfect game to come out with a win."

-- Brandon Knight

THE STAT: 26. The Pistons had 26 assists, one shy of their season high, as their ball movement led to 52.5 percent shooting. It wasn't just the point guards who kept the ball moving. Eight different players had at least two and no one had more than five.

TURNING POINT: The Pistons squandered double-digit leads in all of its home losses this season, and needed to rally after giving away a 13-point lead to Orlando in their last home game. They seemed headed in that direction again when Portland went on a 7-0 run late in the third, cutting their advantage to four points. Detroit instead went on a 7-2 run to finish the quarter, including a 3-pointer by Kyle Singler in the final second to make it 82-73. Three-pointers by Rodney Stuckey and Charlie Villanueva early in the fourth pumped the lead up to 13, and the Blazers never got closer than six the remainder of the game.

QUOTABLE II: "His energy level has been very, very high. Brandon has a great spirit and, when he plays with that spirit, you can see and feel it. That's something that's uplifting to the team. That's an intangible and it's important he plays with that every single day."

-- Pistons coach Lawrence Frank on Knight

HOT: Villanueva, who scored 17 points after being inserted into the rotation Sunday at New York, had 10 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals off the bench for Detroit. Villanueva has replaced Jonas Jerebko, who was in a shooting slump.

NOT: Lillard didn't score his first field goal until late in the third quarter. He also committed three turnovers while being harassed by Knight and Stuckey in his worst outing of his young career.

ROOKIE WATCH: Singler has his best night of the season, recording his first double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. The point total tied his season best and his rebounding total doubled his previous best. He also added a career high five assists.

NOTABLE: Detroit averted tying its worst start in franchise history after 15 games. It went 3-12 in three previous seasons: 1962-63, 1980-81 and last season. ... The Trail Blazers had won six of their last seven against the Pistons. ... Portland forward Jared Jeffries suffered a cut on his nose in the second half. ... Blazers forward Nicolas Batum had just seven points and has made just four of his last 20 3-point attempts. ... Detroit's point total was a season high.

UP NEXT: For the Trail Blazers, Wednesday @ Washington, Friday @ Boston, Saturday @ Cleveland. For the Pistons, Wednesday vs. Phoenix, Friday @ Memphis, Saturday @ Dallas.