AUBURN HILLS, Michigan (Ticker) -- With their rematch with the
Indiana Pacers successfully completed, the Detroit Pistons
return home to focus on other things, beginning with Vince
Carter's probable debut for the New Jersey Nets on Monday.
No punches were thrown in a 98-93 win over the Pacers on
Saturday, providing a peaceful holiday meeting for the two teams
involved in an ugly brawl in their prior matchup November 19.
Instead of avoiding flying fists, Indiana fans watched Detroit's
backcourt of Richard Hamilton and Chauncey Billups combine for
45 points and 10 assists to help push the Pistons back above the
.500 mark (13-12).
The 98 points were Detroit's most since a 101-85 win over the
Dallas Mavericks on December 6.
The Pistons will look for a duplicate effort Monday against a
Nets squad that has turned around a poor start and should see
Carter suit up for the first time since joining the club via
trade December 17.
The five-time All-Star intends on returning from an Achilles
injury that has sidelined him since December 8, when as a member
of the Toronto Raptors, he left a game vs. Detroit.
After starting the season 2-11, New Jersey is 7-5, including a
92-90 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday. Richard
Jefferson scored a career-high 42 points and had an alley-oop
layup with 0.8 seconds left to clinch the win.
Jefferson averaged 21.5 points as the teams split four games
The Pistons have won 16 of the last 18 meetings at home.