National Basketball Association
Scores - Previous |
Playoff Schedule |
Standings - East |
Standings - West
Detroit Pistons (1-1) at Orlando Magic (1-1), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Orlando Magic hope that a return to TD Waterhouse
Centre will propel them to a 2-1 lead over the Detroit Pistons in Game 3 of
their best-of-seven series.
The Pistons survived yet another outstanding performance by Tracy McGrady,
who bested his own Magic playoff record by scoring 46 points, to post an 89-77
win in Game 2 of their best-of-seven-series. Richard Hamilton delighted the
crowd at The Palace of Auburn Hills with a 30-point effort to help even the
series at one apiece.
Chauncey Billups added 15 points, while Corliss Williamson came off the bench
to contribute 13 as the Piston reserves outscored Orlando's bench 22-12.
Ben Wallace was awarded his second straight NBA Defensive Player of the Year
award prior to the game. Wallace demonstrated the skills that earned him the
hardware, as he grabbed a game-high 16 boards and blocked three shots. He
became the sixth player in NBA history to win the award in consecutive
seasons. Overall, Detroit won the battle of the boards, 47-30, including a
12-5 edge on the offensive glass.
The Pistons shot 42.5 percent from the floor, which was a major improvement
over the dismal 31.6-percent effort in the Game 1 loss.
Hamilton was 10-for 13 at the free throw line to follow up on his perfect
12-12 stint in the opener. He is averaging 29 points over the first two games
of the series.
Detroit has lost Game 1 of a seven-game series eight different times and has
come away victorious only once, in the 1989 Eastern Conference Finals against
the Chicago Bulls. The top-seeded Pistons are playing Orlando for the second
time in the postseason. The previous matchup came in 1996, when Orlando swept
in three games.
Detroit claimed the top spot in the East for the first time since 1990. The
Pistons certainly hope that history repeats itself, as they won the NBA
Championship in both previous years that they held the best record in the
conference, in 1989 and 1990.
Detroit has home-court advantage at least through the first three rounds. The
Palace is not a friendly place to enter, as the Pistons were the top club in
the league with an average home attendance of 20,470 during the regular
Despite his apparent ability to carry his team, McGrady challenged his
teammates to help him out after the Game 2 loss.
"Every time I gave up the ball, they were a little tentative," McGrady said of
his teammates. "We can't be like that. I can't win it by myself. I'm pretty
sure they understand that."
Doc Rivers wants a more aggressive effort out of his squad in Game 3.
"We're just not smart enough or good enough to play that way," Rivers said of
his team's passive play. "We have to play aggressive. I have to live with the
powered by The Sports Network