Pistons snap 13-game losing streak
PHOENIX — The Detroit Pistons downplayed a comment by Phoenix Suns forward Markieff Morris from the first time the teams met earlier this season.
But players were overheard shouting “We knew he had heart,” in the locker room while guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, the subject of Morris’ remark, talked about his critical 3-pointer late in Friday’s 105-103 win for the Pistons.
Caldwell-Pope hit a fadeaway 3-pointer in front of the Suns’ bench with 1:13 to play. It put the Pistons ahead 100-97 — a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. Morris had said Caldwell-Pope showed a lack of heart with a missed shot at the buzzer in the Suns’ win last month.
“I did kind of look at the bench just to let them know I do have a heart and I will take that shot every day,” Caldwell-Pope, who finished with 14 points, said.
Andre Drummond sank a free throw with 2.5 seconds left, part of his 23 points, and the Suns turned the ball over on their last possession of the game to help Detroit seal the win and end a 13-game losing streak. The Pistons improved to 4-19, sending the struggling Suns to their fourth straight loss.
“There were smiles on everybody’s faces, but we have a game (today in Sacramento) so we can’t be too excited,” Drummond said.
Drummond’s 23 points and 14 rebounds led the Pistons, with Josh Smith adding 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Goran Dragic led the Suns with 18 points, including a layup with 15.9 seconds left in the game to make the score 102-101 Detroit. But the Suns (12-12) came up short.
KNICKS 101, CELTICS 95: At Boston, Carmelo Anthony scored 22 points, Amare Stoudemire had 20 and the New York Knicks snapped a 10-game losing streak by beating the Boston Celtics.
Tim Hardaway Jr. added 16 points and Jason Smith 12 as New York ended its longest losing streak since the 2005-06 team dropped 10 straight from Jan. 28-Feb. 13.
PELCIANS 119, CAVALIERS 114: At New Orleans, Tyreke Evans 31 points and 10 assists, Ryan Anderson tied a career high with eight 3-pointers on his way to 30 points, and the New Orleans Pelicans overcame the loss of Anthony Davis to beat LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Davis left in the first quarter after taking an elbow to chest while jostling for position during a free throw by Kevin Love.
James, returning from a one-game absence because of a sore knee, scored 41 points, while Love added 21 points.
HAWKS 87, MAGIC 81: At Atlanta, Paul Millsap scored 23 points, Al Horford added 17 and the Atlanta Hawks won their ninth straight game, beating the Orlando Magic.
The winning streak is Atlanta’s longest since it opened the 1997-98 season with 11 victories in a row.
LAKERS 112, SPURS 110, OT: At San Antonio, Nick Young scored 29 points, including a go-ahead 3-pointer with 7.4 seconds left in overtime, Kobe Bryant had 22 points and the Los Angeles Lakers overcame a shaky ending to beat San Antonio.
Tim Duncan had 19 points and 18 rebounds for San Antonio, which had its six-game home winning streak snapped.
HEAT 100, JAZZ 95: At Salt Lake City, Dwayne Wade scored a season-high 29 points, including three free throws in the final 9 seconds, to help the Miami Heat beat the Utah Jazz.
Chris Bosh had 22 points and Luol Deng added 14 for the Heat, who closed a five-game road swing on a winning note after losing five of their previous six.
GRIZZLIES 113, HORNETS 107, 2OT: At Memphis, Tenn., Mike Conley scored six of his 19 points in the second overtime, and the Memphis Grizzlies beat the Charlotte Hornets.
Zach Randolph had 20 points and Marc Gasol also scored 19 for the Grizzlies, who got a tying 3-pointer from Vince Carter with 4.5 seconds left in the first overtime.
THUNDER 111, TIMBERWOLVES 92: At Minneapolis, Russell Westbrook scored 20 of his 34 points in the first half and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Minnesota Timberwolves for their fifth straight victory.
Kevin Durant added 16 as he and Westbrook played the second night of back-to-back games for the first time since returning to the Thunder lineup.
WIZARDS 104, CLIPPERS 96: At Washington, John Wall outplayed Chris Paul in their first meeting of the season and the Washington Wizards snapped the Los Angeles Clippers’ nine-game winning streak.
Wall controlled the game with 10 points and 11 assists while Paul struggled with a season-high six turnovers.
NETS 88, 76ERS 70: At New York, Mason Plumlee scored a season-high 18 points and had 10 rebounds, and the Brooklyn Nets broke open a close game in the fourth quarter to beat Philadelphia.
Robert Covington had 20 points for the 76ers, an NBA-worst 2-20. Michael Carter-Williams added 14 points and nine assists.
RAPTORS 106, PACERS 94: At Toronto, Jonas Valanciunas had 10 points and 14 rebounds, Lou Williams scored 26 and the Toronto Raptors handed Indiana its seventh straight loss.
Solomon Hill scored 16 for the Pacers, whose seven-game losing streak is their longest since an eight-game skid from Dec. 18-30, 2009.