Notebook: Raptors 99, Pistons 82



Posted Mar 29, 2013 11:27 PM

By Dana Gauruder, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan scored 21 points apiece as the Toronto Raptors snapped a five-game losing streak with a 99-82 victory over the Detroit Pistons at The Palace of Auburn Hills on Friday.

Amir Johnson had 20 points and eight rebounds, and Jonas Valanciunas delivered 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Raptors (27-45), who outscored the Pistons 36-15 in the third quarter. Jonas Jerebko had 20 points for Detroit (24-29), which has lost 12 of its last 13 and eight straight at home.

QUOTABLE: "[Rudy Gay] really picked it up, especially in that third quarter. He and DeMar got it going and the type of players they are, when they get it going, it's hard to stop us. We called plays for Rudy and put him in different situations where [defenders] can't set themselves and we tried to get in transition, where the defense can't lock in."

-- Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry on Gay's 19 third-quarter points

THE STAT: 12.3 -- Detroit has a nasty habit of coming out of the locker room listless after halftime. It has been outscored in the third quarter seven consecutive games by an average of 12.3 points. It was outscored 38-16 by Minnesota in a 105-82 home loss to the Timberwolves on Tuesday.

TURNING POINT: The Raptors opened the second half on a 28-7 run. Gay had 16 of those points, including the first two baskets, an alley-oop dunk and two 3-pointers. DeRozan supplied a layup, a dunk and a long two-pointer during the outburst.

QUOTABLE II: "We ran post plays for DeMar. We know they like to double team and it's our job to come help and give him a release. We know if they're going to double team, it will come back to us for a wide open shot. We've just got to help each other."

-- Amir Johnson on DeRozan's strong second half

HOT: While Gay and DeRozan put on a second-half show, big men Johnson and Valanciunas carried the Raptors in the first half. They shot a combined 13-for-14 from the field while scoring 28 points.

NOT: Detroit's Greg Monroe was averaging 27 points and 10.5 rebounds in his first two games against Toronto this season but was held in check on Friday. Though he had a double-double of 11 points and 13 rebounds, Monroe shot just 3-for-11 from the field. He also made three turnovers.

ROOKIE WATCH: Pistons rookie center Andre Drummond returned after missing 22 games due to a stress fracture in his back. He made his first start and looked sharp, contributing 17 points, four rebounds, two blocks and two steals in 19 minutes. Drummond scored six points in the early going and had three second-quarter dunks.

IN THE ARENA: The Pistons held a '90s night, featuring a halftime performance by Color Me Badd and an appearance by Luke Perry. That helped them bring in an announced crowd of 19,322. They have tried to bring in more fans throughout the season with musical halftime performances but still rank 28th in attendance.

NOTABLE: Point guard Jose Calderon, traded by the Raptors to Detroit on Jan. 30, had eight points, seven assists and three turnovers against his former team. ... Lowry made five of his 11 assists in the third quarter. ... Toronto shot 53.7 percent from the field while holding the Pistons to 40.8 percent shooting. ... The Pistons were eliminated from the playoffs when Milwaukee defeated the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday. ... Pistons reserve guard Will Bynum missed his second consecutive game with a right hand strain. ... Detroit plays six of its last nine on the road. ... Toronto had lost four straight at The Palace. Detroit ranks first in points in the paint among Eastern Conference teams at 45.7 per game. It had 46 against Toronto but gave up 54.

UP NEXT: For the Raptors, Sunday @ Washington, Monday vs. Detroit, Wednesday vs. Washington. For the Pistons, Sunday @ Chicago, Monday @ Toronto, Wednesday @ Boston.