Pistons score 64 second-half points, beat Magic 108-104 in Orlando

Looking to tighten their grip on the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, the Detroit Pistons headed to Orlando, the old stomping grounds for Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy. Coming out of halftime down 51-44, the Pistons rallied in the second half and put up an impressive 64 points to come away with a 108-104 victory.

It was a good game for the Pistons everywhere except the free throw line where Detroit shot a putrid 19-31. The difference in the game was the Pistons hot three-point shooting. Detroit went 11-27 from downtown compared to Orlando’s 4-15.

Four of the five Pistons starters scored in double figures, and the fifth starter, Marcus Morris, was just one point shy. Center Andre Drummond recorded his 66th double-double on the season posting 13 points and 16 rebounds. Point guard Reggie Jackson led the way with 24 points on 7-18 shooting, and shooting guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope played an extremely well-rounded game scoring 18 points on 7-10 shooting on offense, and proving to be a pest on defense, finishing the game with three steals.

The Magic did a lot of their damage in the point, scoring 52 points inside, and bullied the Pistons down low much of the game. Forward Evan Fournier led the team in scoring with 19 points on 7-15 shooting and guard Elfrid Payton wasn’t far behind him scoring 17 points on 8-13 shooting. Former Piston Brandon Jennings came off the bench but wasn’t very effective, scoring only 5 points in 16 minutes of play.

Rookie guard Stanley Johnson didn’t play for the Pistons, which meant backup Reggie Bullock had to step up tonight, and did he ever. Bullock scored 13 points on 5-9 shooting, and drained 3-6 three pointers. Bullock also distributed the ball well, finishing the game with six assists.

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The Pistons now cut their magic number down to one and play at home against the Washington Wizards on Friday for a chance to clinch their first playoff berth since 2009.

For all you scoreboard watchers interested, the team trailing the Pistons in the playoff race, the Chicago Bulls, play the Miami Heat on the road tomorrow night on TNT.

It was a good effort from the Pistons tonight, and their three-point shooting was really the key difference. While they didn’t dominate the Magic, you have to happy to get a win any way you can at this point in the season.

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