Hamilton, Pistons stay hot with rout of WarriorsMar 7, 2009 - 5:19 AM AUBURN HILLS, Michigan (Ticker) -- The Detroit Pistons keep on rolling.
The former Eastern Conference power continued its push toward home-court advantage in the first round Friday night, routing the Golden State Warriors, 108-91, for their fourth consecutive victory.
Richard Hamilton scored 22 points and Rodney Stuckey added 14 and eight assists to lead the way for Detroit, which suffered through an eight-game losing streak last month but has responded well in the absence of its lone All-Star, guard Allen Iverson.
"It's a good time for us to make a run now," Hamilton said. "We pretty much know we can't get the one, two or three seed, we're so far behind, but we can definitely shoot for the fourth."
He has been a lightning rod since his arrival in Motown as the Pistons struggled for the better part of three months with him in the starting lineup. While a back injury has sidelined him recently - and will keep him out for the next few games - the lineup was going to go see some changes anyway.
Even when he returns, Iverson will be coming off the bench - and with the way Hamilton has been playing since his return to the starting five, that may be a good thing.
"I was very pleased that our starters came out and set the tone for the kind of game we were going to play," Pistons coach Michael Curry said. "They were focused."
Thanks to hot shooting and a dominant performance on the glass, the Pistons jumped out to a big early lead and never looked back. Midway through the first period, Stuckey buried a pair of free throws to spark an 18-2 run that gave his team control for good.
"It was important for us to get a jump on them so we could get some rest," Hamilton said. "I thought we did a great job of coming out early."
Hamilton followed moments later as he found Tayshaun Prince for a layup, then took the lead himself moments later with a 3-pointer. Will Bynum added a three-point play later in the period en route to a 31-14 advantage.
"We got into a gunfight tonight and we had a knife," Warriors coach Don Nelson said. "We didn't play well in the first half. I knew that we could play better and at least we did that in the second half. Otherwise it was going to be a longer night than it was."
Prince and Jason Maxiell added 16 points apiece for Detroit, which held a 54-40 rebounding edge and held the Warriors to just 38 percent shooting (33-of-86).
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