Hamilton, Pistons beat Raptors in overtimeMar 14, 2009 - 3:44 AM TORONTO (Ticker) -- Don't expect Detroit guard Richard Hamilton to give up his spot in the starting lineup again this season. Antonio McDyess certainly doesn't want him to.
Hamilton had 24 points and a career-high 16 assists, McDyess added 16 points and 13 rebounds, and the Pistons beat the Toronto Raptors 99-95 in overtime on Friday night.
Detroit has won six of eight since Hamilton returned to the starting lineup in place of the injured Allen Iverson, and the change has the Pistons feeling like they've gone back in time.
"Some games we do feel like the old Pistons," McDyess said. "We've got each other's backs, playing free and having fun. For a while it's been that way, since we've had Rip in the lineup."
Iverson is at least a week away from returning from a sore back, but McDyess wants Hamilton to keep his starting job.
"We've got to keep it the way it is," McDyess said. "We've only lost (two) games with him in the lineup. He's been sharing the ball like a point guard, which is not his strength, and really scoring, also. With the energy he brings, it's like we have more confidence in ourselves now."
Hamilton said the Pistons are trusting each other more.
"We kind of lost that this season and we're trying to get back to that," Hamilton said. "Even when we lose games, it's not a game where you say 'Oh man, they don't even look like the Pistons.' We're fighting, we're playing hard and getting wins."
For Hamilton, trust starts with him sharing the ball on offense and getting his teammates involved.
"I'm a strong believer that if you're open, you get the ball, regardless of if you're a rookie, second year, third year, whatever," Hamilton said. "You've just got to trust your teammates and I thought tonight we really did that."
Rodney Stuckey scored 17 points and Jason Maxiell matched a season high with 16 for Detroit, which swept the season series from Toronto for the first time since 1997-98. The Pistons have won 14 of their past 17 against the Raptors.
Chris Bosh had 27 points and 10 rebounds and Jose Calderon added 20 points and 11 assists, but it wasn't enough as the Raptors lost their seventh straight, matching a season-high.
Bosh reacted harshly when asked if he was frustrated by Toronto's latest skid.
"Frustrated? Stop using that word, frustrating," Bosh said. "Jesus Christ, where do you all get that word. Use another word. You all got a thesaurus around? I'm not upset. You compete, you play the game, you play to win. If you come up short, then that's what it is. Nobody is frustrated around here."
Shawn Marion had 18 points for Toronto, which held its opponent below 100 points for the first time in 10 games.
Detroit pulled away with a 9-0 run to begin the extra session, but Marion's free throw pulled Toronto within 97-94 with 52 seconds left. Stuckey's turnover gave the Raptors the ball and McDyess fouled out, sending Bosh to the line, where he made the first but missed the second. Toronto's Pops Mensah-Bonsu grabbed the rebound but Maxiell rejected his off-balance shot, then put Toronto away with a dunk at the other end.
"Max come up with a big play as Pops was kind of falling away," Detroit coach Michael Curry said. "He needed to come up with that one. That was his guy, Pops was his man that he didn't box out, so he had to get that."
Detroit led 68-57 after three before Toronto opened the fourth on a 10-2 run, cutting it to 70-67 with 9:22 remaining. The Raptors hung around until Marion banked in a shot to make it 85-84 with a minute to go.
After a Pistons timeout, Hamilton found Arron Afflalo for a 3-pointer from the corner, giving Detroit an 88-84 lead. But Marion banked in another and McDyess was called for offensive basket interference, allowing Calderon to tie it on a driving layup with 9 seconds left.
Detroit called timeout and got the ball to Hamilton but his shot rimmed out, sending the game to overtime tied 88-all.
Starting for the injured Rasheed Wallace, Maxiell shot 4-for-4 and scored eight points in the first to give the Pistons a 24-21 lead. Toronto began the second on an 8-2 run, including six straight points from Mensah-Bonsu, and led 45-40 at the half.
Toronto center Andrea Bargnani scored four points in nine minutes before leaving because of flu-like symptoms.
TORONTO 95 FINAL IN 1ST OT
Mar 13 9:49 PM
TORONTO 88 END OF 4TH QTR GOING INTO OVERTIME
Mar 13 9:29 PM
TORONTO 57 END, 3RD QTR
Mar 13 8:50 PM
TORONTO 45 HALFTIME
Mar 13 8:05 PM
TORONTO 21 END, 1ST QTR
Mar 13 7:34 PM
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