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>>caption: DETROIT'S KWAME BROWN FOULED
RETURNING ROCKET TRACY McGRADY (#3)<<
@ HOUSTON, TX
The Pistons picked the wrong night to visit
Boosted by the emotional lift of the return to
action of seven-time All-Star GD Tracy McGrady
from the injured list, the Rockets shot a season-
high 54.7% (41-of-75) from the field and defeated
The loss ended a season's-best five game Piston
Out since last February 9th due to microfracture
surgery on his left knee, McGrady was not much of
an on-floor factor in the game. However, with FWD
Trevor Ariza serving a one game NBA suspension,
Houston got a lift from the standing ovation McGrady got when he entered the
contest off the bench at the 7:44 mark of the 1st-Qtr.
McGrady went only 1-for-2 from the field in his 8-mins of PT. Still, the Rockets
trailed 10-9 when McGrady came in. By the time McGrady grabbed a defensive
rebound, ran up the court and swished a 3-pointer, Houston had a 27-17 lead.
Houston led by as many as 20 before cruising to the finish.
In his second game back from an ankle injury Richard Hamilton topped five Detroiters
who scored in double figures with 21-P. Rodney Stuckey added 17-P, Charlie Villanueva
16-P and rookies Jonas Jarebko & Austin Daye had 15 & 10-P respectively.
Houston's Aaron Brooks had 23-P and a game-high 10-A for his third double-double
of the season. Luis Scola matched Brooks' co-game-high 23-P and scored 11 of the
Rockets 29-P in the 1st-Qtr. Reserve Carl Landry had 19-P while Chase Budinger had
16-P with a game-high 12-RB in his first career start.
Now 11-13 on the season, Detroit has lost five of its last six match-ups with Houston.
PISTONS H-COACH JOHN KUESTER: "Going into the game I told our players the aggressor
would win the game. Houston was very aggressive and that is why they won the game.
They had a lot of easy opportunities in the transition game. We had 26 assists and only
nine turnovers and with those type numbers you would usually be in the game. We just
didn’t defend well...Houston did a great job. They are well coached and play with a
tremendous amount of energy. They played hard and deserved to win."
PISTONS GD RICHARD HAMILTON: "Every opportunity we had to make a run they answered
it by making shots. We gave up too many easy transition baskets and they seemed to hit
every open shot...Houston played well. We expected their movement because that is the
way Coach Adelman teams play. They found their rhythm early and they played unselfish
basketball. Brooks is a really good player and he’s showing what he can do at this level. He’s
ROCKETS GD TRACY McGRADY: "It's been so long since I've played, it was just a
great feeling to be back on the court. Just to get up and down the court with these
guys and to be back out there competing is what I missed. To have that back, finally,
and feel good and have fun doing it, there's nothing better...It's all just coming back
naturally to me...Microfracture is not some simple surgery to come back from. So far,
man, it just feels good to know I’m able to go back on the basketball court and hopefully
soon be myself...You guys have no idea what I went through, no idea."
ROCKETS GD AARON BROOKS: "We got on the run. We got some easy buckets. We
got a lot of layups."
Hamilton, who has played in only three games all season, tweeked a hamstring
in Tuesday's game and is day-to-day.
While McGrady had a dramatic triple, the two teams combined to go just 6-for-37
from beyond the arc.
Houston scored 100-P for the first time in five games.
Brooks has 20 or more points in six of the last eight games.
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