AUBURN HILLS, Michigan (Ticker) -- The Houston Rockets have a
habit of barely holding on to big leads. Lately, the Detroit
Pistons are happy to have a lead at all.
The Rockets will travel to the Motor City to take on the
struggling Pistons on Saturday.
Tracy McGrady collected 21 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists
and Yao Ming added 20 points and 12 rebounds as the Rockets
survived a 37-point effort from Ben Gordon and edged the Chicago
Bulls, 101-100, on Thursday.
Bulls forward Andres Nocioni rattled in a 3-pointer on the final
play of the game with Shane Battier closely guarding him. It
was a little too close for coach Jeff Van Gundy's comfort, as
the Rockets forward could have been called for a foul -
resulting in a potential game-tying four-point play.
But it should not have gotten to that point for Houston, which
had a 19-point lead against the San Antonio Spurs before being
outscored, 49-28, in the second half and absorbing a 92-84
setback Tuesday. Against Chicago, the Rockets were in front by
as many as 21 points, but barely held on.
Detroit, who has been playing poorly, almost surrendered a big
lead of its own. Richard Hamilton scored 27 points to lead six
players in double figures as the Pistons survived a late charge
for an 100-91 victory over the Washington Wizards on Friday.
Temperamental Rasheed Wallace had 20 points and 10 rebounds and
Tayshaun Prince also scored 20 for Detroit, which had lost four
of its last five overall and three straight against the Wizards.
Chauncey Billups collected 12 points and 10 assists and Hunter
chipped in 12 off the bench for the Pistons, who shot 43 percent
Houston has lost its last five games against Detroit.