Pistons Push Past Wizards: 104-98


Jan 18, 2014; Washington, DC, USA; Detroit Pistons guard Brandon Jennings (7) dribbles the ball during the game against the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

– Brandon Jennings (14 points, 8 assists), helped lead Detroit to a comeback victory against the Wizards in Washington Saturday night. This loss was the third time the Wizards had an opportunity to get above .500 in 4 years, and failed to do so.

In an unexpected turn of events, the Pistons came back from a double-digit deficit to win their third game in their last four, defeating the red-hot Washington Wizards in Washington Saturday night.

Despite the fantastic performance put on by soon-to-be All-Star Point Guard John Wall (34 points, 6 assists, 4 rebounds), The Pistons found a way to pull out a much-needed road victory against a team that they will be battling with the rest of the season for playoff position. The Wizards (19-20), tied for fifth in the Eastern Conference with the Chicago Bulls, are just 2.5 games ahead of the Pistons despite the sub par play by the team in recent weeks.

Despite the Pistons pitiful performance against former Michigan Wolverine Guard Trey Burke and his Jazz team Friday night, the Pistons have actually been playing decent basketball of late, winning both of their last two road games (Philadelphia and Washington), while defeating a very well coached Phoenix Suns team at home last week.

The Pistons started off the game like they usually do, sluggish. Washington jumped out to a 24-14 lead with just two minutes to play in the opening quarter. The Pistons did claw their way back at the end of the quarter behind a string of hustle plays by their reserve guys, Kyle Singler, Rodney Stuckey, and Will Bynum. Those three were the only Piston reserves to get any playing time in Washington Saturday night, as HC Mo Cheeks shortened up his rotation.

The Wizards opened up the second period with a 29-22 advantage, as they gradually added to their lead throughout the second. John Wall, and the sharp-shooting forward Martell Webster (15 points, 6/8 shooting) led the Wizards to an 8-point advantage at the break, 54-46.

The Wizards pushed their lead to as many as 10 in the second half, 58-48, before Coach Cheeks regrouped his guys early in the third quarter which seemed to recharge them going forward.

Josh Smith helped lead the charge for the Pistons. Despite scoring only 2 points on 0/6 shooting in the first half, Smith heated up in the second half, especially in the third quarter where he piled on 12 points in the period.

It wasn’t just surprising that Smith got going so quickly in the third, but it was the fashion that he did it in that surprised everyone. On shots beyond 8-feet on the year, Smith shoots around a 27% clip, but that’s where he excelled Saturday night. Smith went 8/11 in the second half to lead Detroit all the way back.

After a John Wall and-one tied up the game at 75 late in the third quarter, the Pistons did not relinquish the lead the rest of the way, taking a 79-76 lead to the fourth and final quarter of play. Detroit outscored Washington 33-22 in the third.

Behind the play of Will Bynum (7 points, 6 assists), Kyle Singler (14 points, 4 rebounds), and Rodney Stuckey (20 points), Detroit managed to hold off the Wizards in the fourth, winning the game by a final score of 104-98.

With the victory, Detroit ties up the season series with the Wizards at two a piece. Detroit heads home to play the Los Angeles Clippers on Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Monday) set for an early 1:00 p.m. tip-off in Auburn Hills, Michigan. Detroit (17-23) will try to win their fourth game in their last five tries Monday, as they try to gear up for the second half of the season, as they sit in the seventh spot in the Eastern Conference as we speak.

Look forward to an exciting game on “MLK” Day at The Palace despite the absence of MVP candidate Chris Paul, as Detroit tries to rattle off their second in a row.