AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Jan. 6 (Ticker) -- Bonzi Wells
and the Memphis
Grizzlies continue to roll. The Detroit Pistons continue to
have a hard time getting on track.
Wells scored 23 points off the bench and Mike Miller
added 17 as
Memphis won in Detroit for the first time in more than seven
years, posting a 101-79 rout of Detroit.
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Wells is averaging just over 11 points this season but has been
one of the catalysts for Memphis (17-17) during a season-high
five-game winning streak. Wells is averaging 19 points per game
during the run that has the Grizzlies back at .500 for the
first time this season.
"When you're playing a team like Detroit that has a great
defense and is the world champion, you try to step up your
game," said Wells, who was the Pistons' first-round pick in 1998
but was traded to Portland before he ever went to training camp
"We played like we were in a dream world tonight -- and it was
The Grizzlies are 12-6 since Mike Fratello took over on December
"We've been playing well lately," Wells said. "It took us a
while to get used to coach Fratello's system, but now we're
sharing the ball and running.
"From a complete game standpoint - offensively and defensively
speaking - it was our best (game)," Fratello said. "We were very
active defensively. When you look at 15 steals, eight blocks
and force 23 turnovers, that's a good night's work."
Fratello was especially happy with the play of guard Jason
Williams, who collected 11 assists and had only one turnover.
was nearly as efficient with six assists and two
Memphis went ahead for good with 4:47 left in the first quarter
when Williams snapped a 13-13 tie with a three-point basket.
The Grizzlies led 28-23 after the first quarter, increased their
margin to 53-44 by halftime and broke open the game by
beginning the second half with a 15-3 run.
Memphis led by as many as 26 in the second half.
and Pau Gasol
had 12 points,
chipped in 11 and Lorenzen Wright
added 10 for Memphis, which
had not won in Detroit since November 30, 1997 - when the
Grizzlies were located in Vancouver.
Memphis also swept the season series from Detroit for just the
second time in its 10-year history.
"I don't want to take anything away from them. They played
great, executed great and shot the ball great," said Detroit
coach Larry Brown. "My hat's off to them, but we had no energy.
We came out in the third quarter and played like a bunch of
strangers on both ends."
Brown was most disappointed with the effort of his team.
"I've been real concerned," he said. "We don't get loose balls.
That's been troubling to me. I never thought I would have to
coach effort. This is the last group I ever thought I would
have to do that to."
missed all 10 of his shots from the field but
made 14 free throws to lead the Pistons. It's the first time in
NBA history that a player has led his team in scoring without
making a field goal.
"I don't know how you'd describe tonight," Hamilton said of his
performance. "It just happens. As long as you understand that,
you'll be all right."
added 13 points for Detroit, which endured its
worst margin of defeat this season.
The Pistons had a 16-point loss to the Atlanta Hawks on December
7, and also lost by 16 against Cleveland on November 24.