Stackhouse plays through pain, ails Magic


AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- Jerry Stackhouse knew he should probably sit this one out. His heart wouldn't let him do it.

Stackhouse played with a sore shoulder and scored 23 points to help the Detroit Pistons beat the Orlando Magic 110-102 Friday

"I was telling everyone that I would be out until Sunday, but
then I got here and saw all the cars and all the people, and I realized this was a huge game," said Stackhouse, who missed Wednesday's game against Chicago.

"We needed this one to tie the season series with Orlando, and I just couldn't sit it out."

Cliff Robinson scored 24 points, and Corliss Williamson added 17 for Detroit, which won for the 14th time in 17 games. The Pistons (33-23) are 10 games over .500 for the first time since the 1996-97 season.

"We have to keep building on this and keep winning games,"
Robinson said. "We can put a lot of pressure on Milwaukee and the
other top teams in the East. We are in the position to make a lot
of good things happen."

Tracy McGrady led the Magic with 29 points, but he and coach Doc Rivers felt that his 13-point first quarter might have actually hurt Orlando.

"Sometimes it is a curse when Tracy gets going early," Rivers said. "Our guys did a lot of standing around."

Orlando had only 19 assists as it lost for just the second time in seven games.

"I came off pick-and-rolls and everyone was just watching me,"
McGrady said. "So I had to do it all, and when I started to struggle, we couldn't get anything going."

Orlando led 51-48 at the half, thanks to McGrady's 17 points,
but the Pistons went ahead 63-62 midway through the third quarter
on Stackhouse's three-point play.

Stackhouse finished with 13 points in the quarter, and Detroit
led 76-73 after three.

"I didn't think Jerry was going to play, but he said he wanted to give it a try," Pistons coach Rick Carlisle said. "He played a fine, fine game on both ends of the court."

Chucky Atkins and Jon Barry hit back-to-back 3s to put the
Pistons up nine with 9:12 left.

After McGrady's jumper, the Pistons scored seven straight points
to extend the lead to 93-79.

Williamson scored the last five points, including the second 3-pointer of his seven-year NBA career.

The Magic, as many teams do, started to foul Ben Wallace late in the game, and he made two of four from the line before coming out of the game.

Wallace hit just two of nine free throws in the game.

"Apparently, the difference between Rick and (former Pistons coach) George (Irvine) is that when we started to foul Ben, Rick was smart enough to take him out of the game," Rivers said.

Game notes
Carlisle was named NBA coach of the month for February.
He's the first Detroit coach to win the award since Doug Collins in
February 1997. ... The game was Orlando's fourth visit to the
Palace of Auburn Hills since it acquired Grant Hill from Detroit
before the 2000-2001 season, but Hill has missed all four games due
to ankle problems. ... Williamson's only other 3-pointer came with
Sacramento on April 13, 1999. He is now 2-for-23 in his career. ...
The Magic were the first team to start intentionally fouling
Wallace late in games -- he played for Orlando before coming to the
Pistons in the Hill trade.