Woeful fourth quarter clips Pistons’ win streak
Detroit — It wasn’t as much a reunion as it was projected to be. There were some pregame daps and hugs from Tobias Harris, Avery Bradley and Boban Marjanovic with their former teammates.
There was a welcome-back ovation from the fans at Little Caesars Arena — loudest for Harris — as he was introduced. The rest of the night was about basketball and looking to continue the Pistons’ five-game win streak.
It didn’t happen.
The Clippers roared ahead with a 13-3 fourth-quarter run and held on for a 108-95 victory over the Pistons on Friday night, before a better-than-expected crowd that braved the heavy snowfall to watch Blake Griffin take on his former team.
BOX SCORE: Clippers 108, Pistons 95
Griffin finished with 19 points, eight rebounds and six assists, while Reggie Bullock added 19 points and Andre Drummond had 12 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks for the Pistons (27-27), who snapped their five-game win streak and closed their impressive six-game home stand.
They hit the road for the first time since Jan. 29 to face the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday.
They’ll have to play better than they did in the fourth quarter against the Clippers (28-25), who got nice contributions from Lou Williams (26 points, six assists) and Austin Rivers (16 points). Harris had 12 points and eight rebounds and Bradley added 10 points and eight rebounds in their return to Detroit.
The final quarter was the undoing, as the Pistons managed just 15 points.
The Pistons had their last lead, 82-79, after Drummond’s tip at the 11:32 mark. Montrezl Harrell had a dunk and then two free throws on the next possession and Williams added a 3-pointer to move ahead, 86-82.
Harrell (18 points) got a technical foul and Luke Kennard hit the free throw and Anthony Tolliver (12 points) made a pair of free throws. The Clippers got the run going with a sweeping hook from Harrell, a lay-in by Rivers and another lay-in by DeAndre Jordan (four points, 17 rebounds).
Drummond ended the spurt with a lay-in, but the Clippers kept pouring it on, with another drive by Rivers and a jumper by Williams, to push the lead to 14.
The Clippers poured it on and the Pistons didn’t have an answer on offense with their fourth-quarter struggles.