8:00 PM ET, November 30, 2006
AmericanAirlines Arena, Miami, FL
MIAMI (AP) -- Dwyane Wade endured a bad shooting night, and his last attempt might have been his worst. It was certainly decisive.
Detroit won its seventh game in a row. Defending NBA champion Miami fell to 6-9 and begins a four-game trip Saturday in Memphis.
Dwyane Wade missed a go-ahead field-goal attempt in the final seconds of Detroit's 87-85 win in Miami. But despite scoring only 21 points on Thursday night, Wade's 27.6 points-per-game scoring average through the end of November is the highest at this juncture of a season for any player in Heat history. In fact, this is the third straight season that Wade has set that particular franchise mark. He averaged 24.9 ppg through November in 2004-05 and had a 25.1 ppg average one year ago.
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Wade, who had scored at least 33 points in each of the past three games, shot only 5-for-23. Otherwise his line in the box score was solid: eight assists, no turnovers, five rebounds and 21 points.
"I want to hit every one of them, but it's not scripted that way," Wade said. "I was off. I had a lot of good, open pull-ups that I normally knock down. I wasn't able to hit them tonight."
With Miami trailing 86-85, Wade missed from 18 feet with 1:07 left. The score was the same when he missed again on the Heat's final possession, with the ball falling off the lip of the rim.
"I wasn't able to get the ball in my hand the way I wanted to, and I came up short," Wade said.
"That's our guy," teammate James Posey said. "We're behind him regardless."
Richard Hamilton, who guarded Wade much of the night, went 9-for-17 and led Detroit with 24 points.
"When it got close, Rip made a couple of big shots, and he did a great job defensively," Pistons coach Flip Saunders said.
Detroit packed the lane to keep Wade out of the lane for much of the night, and when he drove, he was often forced to throw up harried, errant shots.
"The penetration wasn't there," Hamilton said. "We just wanted to pack everything in. We did a great job of it."
The Heat, who had shot better than 55 percent in the past two games, settled for 41 percent and fell to 3-6 at home. They lost despite 20 points and 10 rebounds from Udonis Haslem.
The Pistons won despite shooting less than 45 percent. Chauncey Billups had only 11 points and five turnovers for them.
"It was probably the worst game we've played in a couple of weeks, but we came out with a win," he said. "It was ugly."
The game, the first this season between the two teams, was a rematch of the Eastern Conference finals the past two seasons. Miami defeated Detroit last spring en route to the NBA title, but the Pistons have won 14 of the past 17 regular-season meetings.
Wade took a nasty spill when fouled on a drive, rose slowly and then sank two free throws to make it 74-all midway through the fourth quarter.
Rasheed Wallace's 3-pointer with 5:40 left put the Pistons ahead to stay, 79-76. Billups' 3-pointer on the next possession increased the margin to six.
The Heat took a 6-0 lead, their best start of the lead. A 25-18 edge gave them an advantage at the end of the first quarter for only the second time in nine home games.
Miami led by up to 11 points early. The Pistons went ahead for the first time with 3:23 left in the third quarter on a jumper by Hamilton, which made it 61-60.
"We fell behind early, and it's like we were swimming upstream for most of the game," Saunders said.
The Heat trailed only 66-64 after three quarters even though Wade was 3-for-16.
"I love him," coach Pat Riley said. "Five-for-23 or 10-for-12, it doesn't make any difference."
Heat F Wayne Simien is sidelined indefinitely with a salmonella infection, the same ailment that struck him last summer. He won't accompany the team on its trip. ... Posey returned after missing five games with a calf injury. ... The Pistons came into the game with 171 turnovers, fewest in the NBA. ... Miami lost despite committing only six turnovers.
Team Stat Comparison
|FGM-FGA||31-69 (.449)||32-78 (.410)|
|3PM-3PA||7-15 (.467)||6-11 (.545)|
|FTM-FTA||18-28 (.643)||15-22 (.682)|
|Fast Break Points||8||11|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||17 (1/0)||22 (3/0)|