Pistons beat Bobcats 92-91 to snap losing streak
Posted at: 03/23/2013 10:09 PM
By STEVE REED
(AP) CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Charlie Villanueva scored 14 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, including a go-ahead driving layup with 15 seconds left, and the Detroit Pistons defeated the Charlotte Bobcats 92-91 to snap a 10-game losing streak.
Villanueva hit three 3-pointers in the final period to help the Pistons avoid their longest losing streak since 2010.
Jason Maxiell added 14 points and reserve Rodney Stuckey had 13 points and eight assists for the Pistons.
Kemba Walker had 25 points and Bismack Biyombo had 12 points and 10 rebounds for the Bobcats, who had their two-game winning streak snapped.
The NBA-worst Bobcats had the ball and a chance to win the game with 14 seconds left, but Walker missed an off-balance leaner in the lane and Josh McRoberts’ reverse layup after an offensive rebound didn’t fall as time expired.
The Bobcats led by three coming into fourth quarter but every time they tried to pull away Villanueva would answer with a long 3-pointer.
The seven-year veteran finally gave the Pistons the lead at 85-84 with just over two minutes to play and the teams traded the lead after that.
With the Pistons trailing by one, Villanueva made a backdoor cut and scored on a two-handed jam to give the Pistons a 90-89 lead.
Walker answered with a pair of foul shots at the end other, but Villanueva then made the play of the game. After missing a 3-pointer, Villanueva crashed the boards for a rebound, corralled the ball and stuck it in on a drive to give Detroit a 92-91 lead.
The Bobcats called a timeout but couldn’t get an open look off an inbound play.
Walker drove with 4 seconds left and put it off the side rim. McRoberts grabbed the loose ball and tried to put in a reverse that didn’t go down.
Gerald Henderson, who came in averaging 22.7 points per game over his past seven games, finished with 15 points.
Detroit entered the game having lost its last 10 games by an average margin of 17.2 points per game.
The Pistons seemed intent on snapping the streak early by jumping off out to a 9-0 lead behind Brandon Knight, who returned after missing four games with a sprained ankle. However, after missing their first four shots from the field the Bobcats went on a 9-0 run to tie the game and led most of the way.
After scoring 117 points against Washington and 109 against Toronto, the Bobcats only managed 92 points, one below their season average.
A big reason for that has been the play of Jannero Pargo, who has excelled while on a 10-day contract. Pargo hit back-to-back jumpers, the latter after shaking Jose Calderon on a nifty crossover, to give the Bobcats a 76-72 lead heading into the fourth quarter and finished with 16 points.
NOTES: The Bobcats were 23 of 25 from the foul line. ... Knight had five turnovers in his first game back from the ankle injury. ... Walker had four steals for the Bobcats.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)