Detroit is an NBA-best 26-4, a record that trails the league's
best 30-game mark by one win. Five teams started 27-3, including
the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls, who won an NBA-record 72 games.
Hill was involved in an unusual play as the Pistons were pulling
away in the fourth quarter.
When Detroit's Richard Hamilton received a pass in front of
Seattle's bench, Hill had both feet on the court. Hill tried to get
out of the way, but as Hamilton jumped to shoot a 3-pointer, the
coach's leg appeared to bump the player.
After Hamilton missed the shot, official Bob Delaney ruled that
the 3-pointer was good because Hill interfered with the shot. Hill
tore off his jacket in protest and stomped on the sideline, a
tirade that drew a technical.
Billups then made a free throw to give Detroit a four-point
possession and an 87-76 lead with 4:19 left.
The Sonics played well for three quarters, trailing just 68-65,
but the Pistons built a double-digit lead midway through the fourth
and didn't have trouble maintaining it.
Detroit's Ben Wallace had 13 points and 21 rebounds, matching a
season high, and Hamilton scored 15.
The Pistons dominated the rebounding battle 54-41, and had 22
second-chance points off 20 offensive rebounds.
Hill, who replaced fired coach Bob Weiss on Tuesday, shouted for
the Sonics to push the ball on offense and to get back on defense.
They did for most of the game.
The Pistons led 26-21 after the first quarter and 45-44 at
halftime following eight lead changes and six ties.
Seattle C Vitaly Potapenko, inactive for a second straight
game with a back injury, planned to practice Saturday, but didn't
know when he would be ready to play again. ... The Pistons drew
their 100th consecutive sellout at The Palace, a streak that
started Jan. 19, 2004. ... Billups, who began the game making 93.3
percent of his free throws, missed a season-high three at the line.
He was 8-of-11.