The Detroit Pistons were down in the dumps. They were on a 10 game losing streak and were finding a new way to lose every game. The Charlotte Bobcats almost gave them an 11th straight loss.
The game started off well for the boys in blue. Brandon Knight returned to the starting lineup and keyed a 9-0 spurt to start the game. The Bobcats came right back with a 9-0 run of their own to tie the game at 9.
Greg Monroe struggled for Detroit and he looked tired after playing 41 minutes the night before in Miami. Monroe missed his first six shots and was blocked by Bobcats rookie Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and 2nd year man Bismack Biyombo.
However, Monroe did things other than scoring. He put his passing ability on display as he found cutters to the hoop. He had a nifty pass to Kyle Singler and when he drew a double team, he kicked it out to Jose Calderon for 3. Monroe had five rebounds and five assists at the half, but the Pistons trailed 50-47.
In the 3rd quarter, Kemba Walker had a jumper to put the Bobcats up 65-55. Then Jason Maxiell got the Pistons back into it. Maxiell had a turnaround and a layup then Rodney Stuckey followed with a layup to get Detroit within 67-63.
Jannero Pargo scored 11 straight points for the Bobcats, making tough shots over Calderon and Knight, to help give Charlotte a 76-69 lead headed to the 4th. Then the fireworks started.
Charlie Villanueva hopped off the bench and gave the Pistons a big spark. He hit back-to-back 3’s to give the Pistons an 81-80 lead. Later, he hit a tough 3 to put Detroit on top 85-84. After Walker made a step back jumper, Stuckey hit a 3 with the shot clock expiring to give the Pistons an 88-86 lead with 1:57 to go.
Walker had a 3-point play for an 89-88 lead and it looked like the Pistons would find a new way to lose. Then coach Lawrence Frank called timeout and drew up a play for Monroe to find a cutting Villanueva for a slam and a 90-89 lead.
Villanueva fouled Walker and he hit both. Villanueva would miss an open 3, but Monroe grabbed the board and gave it to a hard charging Villanueva and he got the tough layup to go over Biyombo with 15.0 seconds left and a 92-91 lead. Detroit got one last stop and it was all over.
The Pistons ended a long 10 game losing streak with a 92-91 win over the Bobcats. Villanueva led the way with18 points, 15 coming in the 4th. Maxiell had 14, Stuckey had 13, and Monroe had six points, eight assists, and nine rebounds. Knight had 10 in his return back to the starting lineup and he looked good.
The Pistons knocked down 10/26 from deep and got 41 points from their bench. This was a win this team needed. That losing streak was too long and now they can get back to having some fun. Now they have two days before returning home to face the Minnesota Timberwolves. It’s all about growing with this team. Even Khris Middleton came off the bench and gave six points and four rebounds in 16 minutes. All about growing.