The Detroit Pistons fell to the Miami Heat 102-96 in a tough game Monday night in Miami. The Pistons had a solid showing, but in the end couldn’t match the pedigree of the two-time defending champs. 21 turnovers cost the Pistons in a game they could have stolen from the Heat.
A solid first half from the Pistons was made more impressive by the fact that young center Andre Drummond was limited to four minutes due to foul trouble. Rodney Stuckey was a bright spot coming off the bench to provide instant offense – offense that was dearly needed due to the Pistons giving up 63 first half points to the Heat. Brandon Jennings had a very nice game going for 26 points but he simply wasn’t given the help he needed.
Miami got things going in the second quarter with their defense. The Heat forced numerous Piston turnovers that lead to monster dunks for Lebron James on the fast break. These easy points were the small difference between the two teams as the Heat took a six point lead into halftime.
The second half was much more competitive defensively. Both teams locked down, and made scoring the ball much harder. The Heat turned to their “Big Three” of Lebron James, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade. While Bosh did most of his scoring in the first half, Wade was able to do most of his damage in the second with the game on the line. Wade finished the night with 30 points, while Lebron had a near triple-double with 24 points, 11 assists, and 8 rebounds, and Bosh chipped in 17 points. Wade has had trouble with his knees all year, but was able to log 37 important minutes for the Heat. After an up and down year it’s a great sign for Miami that Wade has still got it, no matter if he is feeling healthy or not.
The Pistons do deserve a ton of credit for their energy level and effort in the game. There were multiple Miami runs that opened the game up a bit, but each time the Pistons fought back, and made the game close. Detroit just didn’t quite make enough shots in the fourth quarter to keep up with Heat. The Pistons used their energy and length to out-rebound the Heat 51-44 but you simply can’t turn the ball over 21 times on the road and expect to win, especially in Miami.
The Pistons have Tuesday off, then will try to rebound on Wednesday night against a reeling Orlando Magic squad.
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