Rasheed’s Monster Quarter Lifts Pistons
Detroit 94, Boston 84
AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Jan. 16 (Ticker) -- The Boston Celtics didn't have one single player who could contain Rasheed Wallace in the third quarter.
Wallace scored 18 of his 23 points in the third period and Richard Hamilton added 18 as the Detroit Pistons won their fourth straight game, a 94-84 triumph over the Celtics.
"It was just shooting," said Wallace, who added three assists. "I was just playing within the offense."
Wallace had a 3-pointer late in the second quarter and came out on fire in the third quarter, connecting on 7-of-9 shots. His second 3-pointer of the period with four seconds left helped build a 73-65 advantage entering the fourth quarter.
"Rasheed killed us in the fourth quarter the last time we played Detroit, and he beat us in the third quarter Monday," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "He got it going, and when he's hitting fadeaways from the elbow like that, I'm not sure if you can do anything about it."
"We were trying to go to him, inside and outside," said Detroit guard Chauncey Billups, who had 13 points and 16 assists. "We were going to keep going to him until he got tired."
The Pistons were nursing an 80-74 lead with under six minutes remaining when Tayshaun Prince scored on a runner and a 3-pointer from the right corner to rebuild the lead to double digits. Prince scored nine of his 13 points in the final quarter.
"They went to a zone, and that means they are trying to get the ball out of Rip's (Hamilton) hands, so we have to make shots," said Prince, who made 6-of-10 shots.
Reserve Carlos Delfino scored a season-high 11 points and Ben Wallace added nine and 14 rebounds for Detroit, which shot 50 percent (35-of-70) overall and 8-of-19 from 3-point range.
Paul Pierce scored 21 points and Delonte West added 21 and seven rebounds for the Celtics, who shot a dismal 2-of-13 from the arc. Ricky Davis was held in check, going scoreless on 0-of-8 shooting.
"That's the best team in basketball, and we should have known they were going to make a run," said Pierce, who grabbed seven rebounds. "But when they did, and they got the crowd into the game - and Rasheed had a big part in that - we got rattled. We stopped being aggressive and we let them take control of the game."
The Celtics took a 29-17 advantage with 9:34 to go in the second quarter on Tony Allen's driving layup. But the Pistons stormed back, using a 19-6 spurt to take a 41-40 lead at intermission. Billups had 11 points and eight assists.
"In the first quarter, we didn't move the ball and Boston did a great job of hitting shots," Prince said. "The second unit came in and Chauncey got the ball moving for them and got all of them involved."