The Detroit Pistons may not have a championship-caliber team this season, but they're starting to play more like the club that gave Bill Davidson one of his many titles nearly five years ago.

Two days after their Hall of Fame owner passed away, the Pistons look to continue an impressive run and extend a seven-game winning streak against the Memphis Grizzlies on Sunday.

Davidson, who saw Detroit win three titles, died Friday at 86. The cause of death wasn't immediately known.

Davidson also owned the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning when they won a championship in 2004, eight days before the Pistons won their last title.

That Detroit club won with tough defense and outstanding teamwork, attributes that have been somewhat lacking during this disappointing season.

The Pistons (33-31) acquired Allen Iverson from Denver in exchange for popular point guard Chauncey Billups early this season, and they struggled to find the chemistry that helped them advance to at least the Eastern Conference finals each of the past six years.

Iverson, though, is at least a week away from returning from a sore back, and Detroit has gone 6-2 without the All-Star guard after losing its previous eight.

Richard Hamilton, a staple of the Pistons' success in recent years, has sparked the current run with his return to the starting lineup in place of Iverson. The veteran swingman had 24 points and a career-high 16 assists in a 99-95 overtime win in Toronto on Friday night.

The Pistons are beginning to feel like they've gotten their moxie back.

"Some games we do feel like the old Pistons," forward Antonio McDyess said. "We've got each other's backs, playing free and having fun. For a while it's been that way, since we've had Rip in the lineup."

McDyess wants Hamilton to keep his starting job even when Iverson returns.

"We've got to keep it the way it is," he said. "We've only lost (two) games with him in the lineup. He's been sharing the ball like a point guard, which is not his strength, and really scoring, also. With the energy he brings, it's like we have more confidence in ourselves now."

Hamilton is averaging 24.9 points and 7.6 assists since returning to a starting role.

He's started every game during Detroit's winning streak against Memphis (16-48), including an 87-79 victory Jan. 19 in the teams' first matchup of the season. The Grizzlies haven't beaten the Pistons since a 101-79 home victory Jan. 6, 2005.

This Grizzlies team hardly seems in any position to end its skid versus the Pistons. Memphis has lost four straight and 12 of 13 as it struggles to stay out of last place in the West.

The Grizzlies are coming off a 102-92 loss to Boston on Friday night, falling to 4-27 on the road. Fifteen of their next 19 games are against teams with winning records.

Rookie O.J. Mayo has been a bright spot for Memphis this season, but he's showing signs of wearing down. He had 21 points versus the Celtics but shot 9-for-23.

The 6-foot-5 guard, the third overall pick in last year's draft, is averaging 16.6 points - 2.3 below his season average - while shooting 38.1 percent in his last 16 games.

Mayo had 15 points on 5-for-16 shooting in this season's first matchup with Detroit.

Copyright 2008 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited