Billups, Pistons Edge Grizzlies in Double OT
Detroit 106, Memphis 104 (2OT)
MEMPHIS, Tenn., Dec. 19 (Ticker) -- Chauncey Billups lived up to his nickname of "Mr. Big Shot."
Billups hit the winning shot to complete a 30-point performance and Tayshaun Prince scored 24 as the Pistons posted a 106-104 double-overtime victory over the Memphis Grizzlies for their fourth straight win.
After the Pistons took a timeout, Billups came off a double-screen before knocking down a long jumper with under a second remaining to break a 104-104 tie. Memphis then threw the ball the length of the court, but time expired before a shot could be taken.
"They came to me and I knew I'd be able to get a good shot against a smaller man (Damon Stoudamire)," said Billups, who made 8-of-18 shots. "I thought maybe they would've put Dahntay (Jones) on me, but they didn't. Not to say Damon's not a good defender."
"I'm glad he did it," said Detroit forward Rasheed Wallace, who had nine points and nine rebounds. "I'm just glad he did it and we got out of here."
Detroit trailed 97-95 in the second overtime before Wallace drilled a 3-pointer from the corner with 2:56 remaining. Lorenzen Wright's layup then put Memphis back on top by one with just under two minutes left.
Off a miss, Wallace tipped the ball to a wide-open Billups, who drained a 3-pointer with 49 seconds left for a 101-99 advantage. The Grizzlies trailed, 104-101, before Stoudamire tied it with a deep 3-pointer over Ben Wallace with 4.6 remaining.
"Damon is a big-shot player," Memphis coach Mike Fratello said. "It's part of his makeup and personality. We could single out big baskets in the game, but I'll just leave it at that. This will be an interesting tape to watch."
Richard Hamilton scored 19 points and Ben Wallace collected nine points, 14 boards and five blocked shots for Detroit, which improved to a league-best 12-2 on the road.
"This was one of those games where we knew we had control of the game early, but we allowed them to get back in," said Ben Wallace, who added four steals. "They never quit. They just continued to play and continued to play. But this is one we needed for the simple fact that we had control and let it slip away."
Pau Gasol had 32 points and 13 rebounds and Stoudamire scored nine of his 24 in the second overtime for the Grizzlies, who held a 54-22 advantage in points in the paint.
"That's one of those types of games where it's great to be in," Stoudamire said. "You have two teams - the former world champions and a team that's trying to come up and take it to another level. It wasn't the result we wanted. If you can take something from a loss, you can definitely take something from this one."
Detroit grabbed a 28-18 lead after one quarter and led, 69-61, heading into the fourth.
Mike Miller pulled Memphis within 86-85 with a layup with 18 seconds left and Ben Wallace immediately was fouled. He split a pair of free throws before Gasol scored with seven seconds left to force OT.
The teams exchanged baskets in the first OT. Billups hit a 16-footer with 66 seconds left for a 93-91 lead but Gasol's dunk with 10 seconds to go forced the second extra session.
"He's great," Detroit coach Flip Saunders said of Gasol. "We decided we were not going to trap him at all. We were going to try to stay home on the 3-point shooters. So (Gasol) was isolated a lot, one-on-one, and he made some big plays. He played well."