Raptors pull away to down sagging PistonsJan 9, 2014 - 3:30 AM
DeMar DeRozan scored 19 points despite shooting a paltry 3-of-15 from the floor for Toronto, which snapped a brief two-game skid that followed a five- game winning streak
Jonas Valanciunas and Amir Johnson both deposited double-doubles in the win. Valanciunas contributed 16 points and 11 rebounds, while Johnson finished with 10 points and 11 boards.
"We had our legs under us tonight," said Johnson. "We struggled early with our transition game and turnovers, but we played hard for 48 minutes. Coach (Dwane Casey) told us that this was a must win."
Brandon Jennings scored 22 points on 6-of-19 shooting for the Pistons, losers in six straight.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Josh Smith posted 13 points apiece in the loss, while Greg Monroe netted 11 to go along with 11 rebounds.
John Salmons and Greivis Vasquez both scored five points during a 13-2 run in the opening minutes of the second stanza to help Toronto to a 39-28 lead.
Jennings halted the run with a deep 3-pointer from the wing that started a run of 14 straight for the Pistons. Caldwell-Pope buried a three and a running floater before Jennings capped the run with a jumper from the top of the key to help the Pistons to a 42-39 advantage.
DeRozan started the game 0-for-9 from the field until he hit two free throws to stop Detroit's momentum and check in on the scoresheet.
Detroit owned a 54-50 lead at the break.
DeRozan finally got off the schneid and made his first field goal of the game in between threes from Terrence Ross as the Raptors started the second half on a 17-4 charge. Lowry hit a transition three from the top of the arc to close the run and give Toronto a 67-58 lead at 7:02.
Valanciunas then ignited a 12-4 run with a driving slam midway through the third which stretched the lead to 79-66.
Jennings hit a pair at the line to end the quarter and pull the visitors within 10, 84-74, but that proved to be as close as the Pistons got the rest of the way.
"Again, the third quarter was the difference for them and for us, whichever way you want to look at it," said Pistons coach Maurice Cheeks. "(In) the second half they busted the ball down the floor. They made an 8-0 run to open the second half and we couldn't recover."
Valanciunas made another dunk before Johnson hit a nifty hook shot to open the fourth and the Raptors led by double digits for the entire quarter as they cruised to victory.
The Raptors held a slim 26-25 lead after a jumper from Salmons that concluded the scoring in the first quarter.
Ross scored 17 points on 5-for-10 shooting from beyond the arc ... The Pistons fell to 6-2 against the Atlantic Division ... Toronto shot 35-of-86 (40.7 percent) from the field, while Detroit was 34-of-86 (39.5 percent) ... Toronto outrebounded the Pistons 55-47 ... Rodney Stuckey scored 14 points off the bench for Detroit after missing the past three games with a sore right shoulder ... These teams split four games last season.
Jan 8 9:34 PM
- DETROIT: 74
End of 3rd
Jan 8 8:58 PM
- DETROIT: 54
Jan 8 8:13 PM
- DETROIT: 25
End of 1st
Jan 8 7:34 PM
- DETROIT: 2
1st Quarter - 11:46
Jan 8 7:11 PM
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