EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., May 11 (Ticker) -- Jason Kidd found his shooting stroke and the New Jersey Nets have found their way back into the Eastern Conference semifinals.

Kidd scored 22 points as part of his seventh career playoff triple-double as the Nets cruised to a 94-79 victory over the Detroit Pistons, evening the series at two games apiece.

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Kerry Kittles added 14 points and five assists to the Nets' win.
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Detroit opened the series with a pair of home wins by a combined 37 points and New Jersey has responded with two of its own by a total of 33 points. The series shifts back to Auburn Hills, Mich. for Game 5 on Friday.

A big question mark for New Jersey had been the shooting of Kidd, who entered Game 4 just 9-of-40 from the floor in the series, possibly due to the recurring knee problems that hampered him late in the regular season.

The All-Star point guard responded by making 8-of-15 shots, handing out 11 assists and grabbing 10 boards as the Nets never trailed for the second straight game.

"We never base Jason's game on scoring," Nets coach Lawrence Frank said. "The guy's first team All-NBA; year in and year out, he's an MVP candidate."

Kidd was at his best in the third quarter as he made all five shots for 13 points and added a pair of assists. After Kerry Kittles started the period with New Jersey's first six points, Kidd's nine points fueled an 11-2 tear that turned the contest into a blowout, establishing a 66-49 cushion with 5:17 to go.

"Once Kerry started going, I wanted to get going," Kidd said. "I was kind of tired of sitting on the sideline thinking if I was going to make one or miss one."

"It's a matter of staying focused and staying determined," Nets forward Richard Jefferson said. "J-Kidd is not going to shy away from shots."

Kidd's performance was part of a big effort by the "Olympic trio" of the Nets as Jefferson scored 19 points and Kenyon Martin added 16 and 15 rebounds. New Jersey held a 23-3 edge in fast-break points after three quarters and finished with 25.

A stifling defensive effort that limited Detroit to 37 percent (24-of-65) shooting was best displayed in the second quarter.

New Jersey forced seven turnovers in the period and reserve Lucious Harris had a pair of baskets and a beautiful tip pass to Martin for a slam as part of a 9-0 tear that opened up a 33-22 advantage, the first double-digit lead for the Nets.

"We had them in a scramble," said Harris, who netted 11 points. "We got some turnovers and easy buckets off those turnovers."

Richard Hamilton scored 30 points but was the only Piston to reach double figures. Rasheed Wallace, hampered by an ankle injury, and Chauncey Billups, bothered by back problems, combined for only 12 points.

"They just beat us," Detroit coach Larry Brown said. "They were great. They played phenomenal. We gotta figure out how to match their energy."

The Nets outmuscled the usually more physical Pistons to a 49-33 rebounding advantage and also outscored them in the paint, 40-22. In addition, Detroit surrendered a whopping 20 offensive rebounds.