A lopsided victory over the lowly Milwaukee Bucks in November gave the Detroit Pistons their first win streak this season. They head into the rematch seeking to extend their second one of the campaign.
After beating one of the NBA's top teams, the Pistons will attempt to keep their momentum going by earning a third consecutive road win over the Bucks, and Brandon Jennings will try to help in his return to Milwaukee on Wednesday night.
A 107-97 victory at defending champion Miami might have given the Pistons just the spark they need to move away from a lackluster start. Kyle Singler's 18 points off the bench led seven players in double figures and helped snap the Heat's 10-game win streak.
Andre Drummond had 18 rebounds to help Detroit (8-10) amass a 46-34 advantage, and Jennings hit a key 3-pointer with 4:09 remaining to thwart a Miami rally.
'We had a lot of good performances from a lot of people," coach Maurice Cheeks said. "Then we just held our composure because we knew that at some point they'd make a run. Brandon made that big 3 and we were able to hold on. When Brandon hit that big 3, it kind of settled us down a little bit."
Detroit will try to add to its second set of back-to-back wins against a team it beat 113-94 on Nov. 25. The Pistons also had seven players in double figures in that game - led by Rodney Stuckey's 17 - and shot a season-high 53.8 percent.
Jennings had 15 points and 13 assists in his first game against Milwaukee since a four-player deal July 31 that included former Pistons point guard Brandon Knight. Jennings averaged 17.0 points and 5.7 assists in four seasons with the Bucks, who took him 10th overall in the 2009 draft.
"I'm definitely excited (to return)," Jennings said. "All I care about is winning and trying to be the best point guard I can be for (Detroit)."
Jennings' former club snapped an 11-game skid Saturday with a 92-85 win over Boston at the Bradley Center on Saturday but couldn't complete the home-and-home sweep Tuesday, falling 108-100. The Bucks (3-14) scored 37 points in the final quarter but gave up 39 and couldn't complete a comeback from a 13-point deficit in the period.
Milwaukee was beaten 40-33 on the boards after posting a 49-41 edge in Saturday's victory, which ended a five-game home losing streak.
"I felt we were right there. They just made the tough shots," coach Larry Drew said. "They made the plays down the stretch and we did not."
Leading scorer O.J. Mayo (15.1 points per game) had a combined 41 points in the two matchups with Boston after averaging 8.8 in his previous six games. He was held to five points in the loss to Detroit.
Knight had eight points in that game but is averaging 17.3 in his last three contests.
Detroit's Greg Monroe is averaging 18.4 points and 10.6 rebounds in his last nine games against the Bucks and 22.0 points - on 62.7 percent shooting - and 12.5 boards in his last four in Milwaukee.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved