The Pistons jumped out to a double-digit lead in the first seven minutes then cruised to a 104-85 victory over the Bobcats.
"It's hard," said Antonio McDyess, who had 19 points and nine rebounds. "You get out to a big lead against a team like that, and you start to lose your focus."
After Detroit took an early 22-10 lead, the Bobcats only closed within single digits for a short spell early in the third quarter.
"We ran out of gas in the first five minutes of the game," Charlotte coach Sam Vincent said. "Right now, it is tough for us in back-to-back situations, because we just don't have the depth. We played a tough game last night and then had to get on a plane and come here."
Charlotte had snapped a seven-game skid by beating Cleveland Saturday, while Detroit got a day off at home after losing to Chicago on Friday.
"That team is all about their energy level, and we knew they were playing back to back after a big win last night," said Chauncey Billups, who had 20 points. "So we wanted to jump on them early and take them right out of the game."
"Gerald just didn't get his game going tonight," Vincent said. "He is usually a big-time scorer for us, and when he gets under 10, we are going to struggle. He was trying early, but we all hit the wall."
Detroit led by as many as 18 in the first half, before the Bobcats closed to 56-45 at the intermission. McDyess had 15 for Detroit, which shot 61.8 percent in the half.
Charlotte got as close as 57-52 early in the third, but the Pistons responded with a 24-10 run to take firm control. The Bobcats needed Walter Herrmann's buzzer-beating 3-pointer just to close the gap to 81-65 at the end of the period.
"We said at the half that we needed to come out with a surge, which is what we did," Okafor said. "Then you look up at the clock and we're down 14 again. It just got away from us."
Billups had 11 points in the third as the Pistons increased their lead despite shooting just 27.8 percent from the floor. Detroit hit 13 of 15 free throws in the period and outrebounded Charlotte 18-7.
"They came back and got back at the beginning of the third, but we put our foot down and got our lead back," McDyess said. "That was an excellent job."
The Pistons led by as many as 22 in the fourth.
The Pistons announced Sunday that they will assign rookie Cheick Samb to Fort Wayne of the D-League in time for its game on Thursday. Samb, the 51st pick in the 2006 draft, has played in two games this season after playing in Spain last year. ... Hamilton picked up a technical for complaining after a hard foul in the third quarter.