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>>caption: BIGGY'S BEST BEAT
The Hawks left the Pistons in a foul
mood Sunday afternoon. Detroit's
quick trip to Atlanta for a matinee
produced anemic offense and an 85-78
The decision reduced the Pistons to
0-&-6 on Sundays this season.
Ahead in the opening half by 8-P, the
Pistons trailed by as many as 18-P before
suffering the 7-P loss.
It was a reversal of form, since Detroit
had won 12 of its last 16 visits to Atlanta and swept last season's series
between the two teams.
However, the Hawks really are Hot-lanta these days with five wins in their
last six games to go a season-high seven games over the .500-mark at 17-&-10.
Because of its poor Sunday record the Pistons continue to flirt with the .500-
mark at 14-&-11 overall.
A 13-0 run in the 2nd-Qtr gave the Hawks a lead they wouldn't lose, Detroit
getting no closer than 80-76 on a basket by Rasheed Wallace with just 2:30 left
to play in the final frame. Rip Hamilton was ejected for using profanity after
being fouled with 1:14 remaining and the Hawks ahead 83-76.
The starters did almost all the offensive work. Reserves from the two teams
combined for only 18-P, a third of that total the 6-P by Detroit's Antonio McDyess.
Mike Bibby made 10-of-13 from the field including all five of his 3-point attempts
to score a game-high and his season-high of 27-P for the Hawks. Bibby scored 15-P
in the go-ahead 2nd-Qtr.
Atlanta's Joe Johnson added 19-P and 7-A, Al Horford 11-P & 11-RB, Josh Smith
11-P and Marvin Williams 9-P with 10-RB.
Wallace and Rodney Stuckey topped Detroit with 20-P each, Hamilton had 16-P
and Allen Iverson 10-P.
PISTONS H-COACH MICHAEL CURRY: "I thought we defended Joe (Johnson) really well.
I thought we defended Josh (Smith) well. They shot 42 percent. The only thing we didn't
do well is, we didn't defend Mike Bibby...Whether a [ref] missed a foul or not, Rip can't
lose it and get a technical in that (late) situation. That's unfortunate how that happened
right at the end.''
PISTONS G/F RIP HAMILTON: "I don't deserve to get kicked out of the game for that.
There's a lot worse stuff being said out on the floor. I was in the wrong for saying what I
said, but not by any means do you get kicked out of the game for that.''
PISTONS CEN RASHEED WALLACE: "This was a tough game in which we had to man up.
We were able to cut the lead to four or five points but we just could not get over the
hump. Unfortunately we dug a hole for ourselves and we were not able to recover. We
had to scramble on defense more especially since we have a smaller lineup. That’s tough
to do against a team like Atlanta.”
PISTONS GD ALLEN IVERSON; 'The Hawks jumped right on us from the opening tip.
Bibby really got them going. I left him in transition a couple of times and he was able
to knock down some 3 pointers to give them a big lead. They were knocking down
shots and playing good defense."
HAWKS GD MIKE BIBBY: "The first shot I took didn’t feel good, but it went in.
So that’s usually a good indication that the shots you take are going to go in.
Guys were finding me...If we help each other, and play together on both ends,
we’re going to be tough to beat. So we’ve been doing that … And we’re trying
to get as many wins as we can at home.”
HAWKS GD JOE JOHNSON: "That says a lot about what we have added to our team.
I think we have improved. I definitely expect to see positive things the rest of the
HAWKS H-COACH MIKE WOODSON: "We expect this team to beat good teams. If you
can hold the Celtics to (a three-point win), you should be able to beat anybody.''
Bibby was acquired by Atlanta in a trade with Sacramento last FEB 16TH, after
the Hawks had already dropped the season series to Detroit 0-&-4.
Atlanta improved to 5-&-1 when Bibby leads the team in scoring this season.
Horford's 11-11 was his fourth double-double of the season.
Atlanta's only loss over the last half dozen games was to defending NBA Champion
Boston by a tight 88-85 score in Atlanta last Wednesday. After their Sunday win
over New York, the Celtics are 26-&-2 to tie for the best start in NBA history.
The Pistons open a two game Palace homestand Tuesday night vs the Chicago
Bulls. Four of Detroit's last five 2008 games will be at home.
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