Pistons, Raptors put winning streaks on the line
(Sports Network) – The Central Division-champion Detroit Pistons shoot
for their fourth straight win tonight when they pay a visit to the Toronto
Raptors at the Air Canada Centre.
Detroit posted its third straight division crown and captured home-court
advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs with Wednesday’s 104-99
win over the Orlando Magic at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
Chauncey Billups posted 28 points and eight assists, as the Pistons won for
the sixth time over their last seven games. Richard Hamilton scored 21 points,
while Tayshaun Prince netted 17 points and Antonio McDyess added 14 off the
bench in the winning effort.
The Pistons have won two straight on the road and are 26-13 away from the
Motor City this season. On the injury front for the top team in the East,
Billups is listed as probable for Friday’s game with a sore right thigh.
Meanwhile, the Atlantic Division-champion Toronto Raptors have won four in a
row and will open a short two-game homestand this evening. In Monday’s 111-100
win over the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Target Center, Anthony Parker
drained five three-pointers and finished with 24 points to lead the way.
T.J. Ford added 17 points and 10 assists for the playoff-bound Raptors, who
have seven of their last eight games. Chris Bosh contributed 16 points and a
game-high 13 rebounds in the victory.
Toronto, which is third in the Eastern Conference standings, has won five
straight at home and owns a 28-10 record in Canada this season.
Friday’s game between the Raptors and Pistons is the second of three meetings
this season. Detroit won the first matchup, 98-92, on February 10 at The
Palace of Auburn Hills. Both teams will meet again on April 17 in Motown.
Detroit has won seven of eight, 10 of 13 and 15 of the last 19 meetings, but
has lost three of its last five trips to Toronto.