The Detroit Pistons nearly broke through against one of the league's best teams before coming up short again their last time out.
While frustrations are starting to take their toll, Detroit is doing its best to stay positive.
The visiting Pistons look to snap their worst start in franchise history Wednesday night against the Philadelphia 76ers.
Detroit (0-8) saw its woes continue Monday with a 92-90 loss to Oklahoma City. The Pistons, who limited the Thunder to a season-low 37.0 percent shooting, led by as many as 13 points in the third quarter but were outscored 30-17 in the fourth.
"The thing I liked is our guys, when you went in that locker room, very, very disappointed," coach Lawrence Frank told the team's official website. "Laid it all out there, felt like we could have won the game - should have won the game - and you hate where you kick a game. Just to see how much that loss hurt ... it should, and then we had a really good day of practice and you move forward."
The Pistons have played six games on the road, where they've gone 16-64 since the start of 2010-11 to post the league's second-worst winning percentage (.200).
"Now we go back on the road," Tayshaun Prince said. "I don't know who did the schedule for us. It's going to be tough, but this is what we've got to look forward to."
Despite Detroit's struggles, 76ers coach Doug Collins isn't expecting anything to come easily Wednesday.
"First of all, they've played well enough to win some games. They've had their hearts broken," said Collins, who spent three years of his coaching career with Detroit from 1995-98. "You know that the capability is there ... they've been knocking on the door.
"It, to me, is a will to win game. Go out and impose your will, they're coming in our building. We've got to play better at home. ... We've gotta be more focused."
The 76ers (4-3) beat visiting Denver 84-75 in their season opener but have since been outscored by an average of 15.5 points in back-to-back home losses.
Jrue Holiday had 25 points Monday while Jason Richardson (sore ankle) returned from a four-game absence to score 20, but Philadelphia was limited to 13 points during the fourth quarter of a 105-96 home defeat to Milwaukee.
The Bucks shot 51.3 percent, had a 48-31 rebounding advantage and outscored the 76ers 42-24 in the paint.
After learning All-Star center Andrew Bynum will miss at least five more weeks, Philadelphia is hoping to see its frontcourt pick up the pace. Lavoy Allen, who's made six starts at center, is posting 4.4 points and 3.1 boards per game and shooting 36.8 percent. Reserve Spencer Hawes hasn't been much better, averaging 9.0 and 7.4.
"We've got to get more consistent, better games from Spencer and Lavoy," Collins said. "This is not pointing fingers or whatever, in this game you have to have production from your bigs."
Holiday also needs to take better care of the basketball. The fourth-year point guard committed a career-high eight turnovers against the Bucks and is averaging a league-worst 6.0.
"I think I'm trying to make something happen," said Holiday, who leads the team with 19.1 points and 9.0 assists per contest. "Sometimes you just have to be patient. I'm learning, I'm watching film every day and trying to learn from my mistakes."
The 76ers had won three straight in this series by an average of 24.3 points before falling 108-86 at Detroit on April 26. The Pistons have dropped three of four in Philadelphia.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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