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Prince propels Pistons past Lakers

Feb 1, 2008 - 5:53 AM AUBURN HILLS, Michigan (Ticker) -- Tayshaun Prince made sure the Los Angeles Lakers continued to sing the blues in Motown.

Prince scored 22 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer with four seconds left in the fourth quarter, as the Detroit Pistons rallied for a 90-89 victory over the Lakers on Thursday.

It was the ninth consecutive setback at the Palace of Auburn Hills for the Lakers, who haven't captured a win here since January 8, 2002.

In the fourth, All-Star Kobe Bryant connected on a 20-foot jumper with 1:25 remaining to give Los Angeles an 88-85 edge, but All-Star Chauncey Billups scored on a layup on the next possession to keep it a one-point game.

After both teams came away empty-handed, Ronny Turiaf split a pair of free throws after getting fouled on a dunk attempt with 17 seconds left as the Lakers went ahead 89-87.

"I feel terrible because I let the guys down on that free throw," Turiaf said. "If I would have made it, we'd be in overtime."

Prince grabbed Rasheed Wallace's missed jumper and fed Billups, who drove and kicked it back out to Prince for the game-winning 3-pointer from the left corner.

"I got the offensive rebound and (Billups) made another great play by penetrating," Prince said. "By taking the 3-pointer, I really had to get my legs into it. Chauncey made the perfect play. Usually when you get the offensive rebound, you draw and kick."

Los Angeles had a chance to win it, but Bryant was unable to get the ball in the waning moments and Lamar Odom misfired from the wing at the buzzer.

"I just wanted to get the ball and read how the play developed," Bryant said. "They just zoned up, knowing I was probably getting the ball, instead of a man-to-man situation. But Kwame (Brown) was open and Lamar was open, so what are you going to do?"

Bryant had an unscripted triple-double with 39 points, 10 rebounds and a season-worst 11 turnovers in the Lakers' first stop on their nine-game road trip.

"We dominated play and Kobe was real good out there trying to feed his teammates," Lakers coach Phil Jackson said. "Guys weren't catching, guys weren't coming to the ball and he ended up with 11 turnovers - and not all of it was his fault."

Detroit's second unit helped regain the control in the fourth as rookie Rodney Stuckey had his hand in eight points during a 10-2 surge to begin the period for a 77-74 bulge with 7:58 to go.

The Pistons' bench contributed greatly in this one with Stuckey and Johnson each scoring 10 points.

"That's just our job, to be ready, the bench," Stuckey said. "(Arron) Afflalo came in and gave us some big minutes guarding Kobe and hitting some shots. Jarvis (Hayes) knocked down a couple shots, Amir (Johnson) started to play and you know, we're just trying to come out with energy and keep a lead for our vets to come back in and win us the ballgame."

"I was really proud of our bench," Billups said. "They were great. Every time they were in, they opened it up, came back for us and increased the lead in the first half. It was a big win for us. Our bench won us the game. Tay hit the shot, but the bench is what won it for us."

The 6-6 Bryant buried the Pistons in the third, pouring in 16 points to help Los Angeles carry a 72-67 advantage into the decisive fourth quarter.

"I wasn't in a zone, but I just wanted to get us back in the game and be aggressive by attacking," Bryant said about his third-quarter effort.

Derek Fisher had 15 points for the Lakers, who fell to 2-5 since center Andrew Bynum went down with a knee injury on January 13.

Prior to the game, Billups and backcourt mate Richard Hamilton were selected to participate in the All-Star Game for the third time.

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