Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 4)

Series starts 11/26

Game 1: Saturday, November 26th
Game 2: Wednesday, January 25th
Game 3: Friday, March 31st
Game 4: Monday, April 17th

Bucks 105

(36-36, 14-22 away)

Pistons 112

(58-14, 32-3 home)

Coverage: WDWB

8:00 PM ET, March 31, 2006

The Palace of Auburn Hills, Detroit, MI

1 2 3 4 T
MIL 27 32 22 24105
DET 22 23 33 34112

Top Performers

Mil: M. Redd 37 Pts, 5 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Stl

Det: T. Prince 25 Pts, 5 Reb, 6 Ast, 3 Stl, 3 Blk

Pistons rally past Bucks to keep home win streak alive

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- The Detroit Pistons like to make things challenging for themselves.

They almost pushed it too far Friday night.

The Pistons fell behind 15-0 in the opening moments, allowed a 15-1 run to close the first half and trailed by 18 points in the third quarter before rallying to beat the Milwaukee Bucks 112-105.

"I told the guys after the game that they never cease to amaze me," Pistons coach Flip Saunders said. "When this team is challenged, they rise up. Games like this aren't good for the coach's blood pressure, but they show why they are built for the playoffs."

Chauncey Billups acknowledged that the Pistons believe they can pull any game out.

"We're never out of a game, no matter what the score might be," he said. "You can't measure our pride."

Detroit looked especially helpless against Michael Redd, who had 24 points in the first half, but held him to just 13 in the second.

"Michael was just phenomenal," Lindsey Hunter said. "When guys are shooting like that, it is tough, but we were finally able to get some stops."

The Pistons never led until the final quarter and still have not lost a home game to a division rival since March 25, 2005. The Bucks have now lost six straight in Detroit.

"We had no execution in the fourth and that really hurt us," Redd said. "That's a championship team, and they played like it."

After trailing 65-47 in the third quarter, the Pistons tied the game at 85 early in the fourth on Antonio McDyess' jumper, then took their first lead of the game moments later.

McDyess added four more points as Detroit went up 100-92 with 4:35 left.

"They went to him four or five times in a row, and when he makes that jump shot, it opens up everything else for them," Milwaukee coach Terry Stotts said. "He was effective and they took advantage."

McDyess finished with 10 of his 18 points in the fourth.

"He finally got tired at the end," Saunders said. "I told him that, the way he was rolling, we were going to him until he couldn't move."

The Bucks scored the next nine points to regain the lead, but Ben Wallace dunked and Tayshaun Prince blocked Michael Redd's shot to set up a Billups 3-pointer. After a Redd putback, Rasheed Wallace's 3-pointer gave the Pistons a 108-103 lead and put the game away.

"We knew we had to pick it up," Prince said. "We just kept playing defense."

Richard Hamilton and Prince led the Pistons with 25 points each. Rasheed Wallace added 21 points and 10 rebounds.

The Bucks scored the game's first 15 points, including eight from Redd, but the Pistons had already narrowed the margin to 27-22 by the end of the first quarter.

The Pistons tied the game at 44 late in the second, but Redd had 12 points in a 15-1 run to finish the period. Redd hit nine of 11 shots in the half, including all five of his 3-point attempts.

Redd started the second half by hitting a sixth-straight 3-pointer and the Bucks built a 69-51 lead.

"Michael played a terrific game," Stotts said. "It was entertaining, but I'm not taking much consolation in that."

The Pistons then rallied as Milwaukee started to throw the ball away. Detroit pulled within 81-78 on Hamilton's jumper at the end of the third quarter.

Game notes

Despite falling to 36-36, the Bucks still hold the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference. The last time that three teams with sub.-500 records made the playoffs in one conference was 1991-92, when New Jersey (40-42), Indiana (40-42) and Miami (38-44) all made it. They went a combined 1-9 in the East's first round. ... Milwaukee's 59 first-half points matched Detroit's worst defensive outing of the season.<

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 105 112
FGM-FGA 41-79 (.519) 41-77 (.532)
3PM-3PA 11-19 (.579) 5-16 (.313)
FTM-FTA 12-17 (.706) 25-31 (.806)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 10-36 10-37
Assists 24 32
Turnovers 13 8
Steals 4 10
Blocks 3 13
Fast Break Points 9 22
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 25 (1/0) 17 (1/0)
Largest Lead 18 8

Top Performers

Michael Redd Redd
Points: 37
Reb: 5
Ast: 4
Stl: 2
Blk: 0
Tayshaun Prince Prince
Points: 25
Reb: 5
Ast: 6
Stl: 3
Blk: 3