Pistons visit Orlando
(Sports Network) – The Detroit Pistons try to stay on the winning track this
evening when they open a two-game Sunshine State road trip against the Orlando
Magic at the TD Waterhouse Centre.
On Wednesday, Tayshaun Prince scored half of his 22 points during a big
fourth-quarter run to lead Detroit to a 97-87 triumph over the Los Angeles
Rasheed Wallace tallied 19 points and Chauncey Billups added 18 for the
Pistons, who became the first NBA team to reach 40 wins (40-8) and snapped
their only two-game skid so far this season.
The Pistons had been beaten by Indiana and Atlanta in their last two games,
falling to the Hawks by a point on Tuesday. However, Prince’s fourth quarter
push moved Detroit to a 22-2 home mark this season. Detroit has won eight in a
row at The Palace.
Despite owning the best mark in the league, not one Pistons player was
selected as an All-Star starter. However, the team will send four reserves in
Billups, Richard Hamilton, Ben Wallace and Rasheed Wallace.
Prince was the lone Detroit starter not selected for the team, but NBA
commissioner David Stern is expected to pick a replacement for injured All-
Star Jermaine O’Neal today. Prince is one of a handful of players thought to
be in the running.
The Pistons, who will close their brief trip in Miami on Sunday, are 18-6 away
from home this season.
Orlando, meanwhile, comes in on a sour note after falling in double overtime
to the Milwaukee Bucks, 94-89, on Wednesday at the Bradley Center. Hedo
Turkoglu scored 27 points to pace the Magic, who have lost two in a row.
DeShawn Stevenson scored 14 points, and Dwight Howard posted 11 points and 14
rebounds, while Pat Garrity added 10 points in the losing effort.
Orlando will not have an All-Star representative, but Dwight Howard is sure to
be on the short list of players Stern is considering to replace O’Neal.
Howard, in his second season after being selected with the first overall pick
in the 2004 draft, has scored 15.2 points-per-game, while leading the team
with 12.6 boards-a-game.
The Magic, who will hit the road for a pair of games following tonight’s tilt,
are 13-11 in their arena this season.
Detroit topped the Magic earlier in the season and has won three straight and
six of the last seven meetings. The Pistons have also won four of five and
five of eight in Orlando.