Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 11/3

Game 1: Sunday, November 3rd
Game 2: Wednesday, February 5th

Clippers 80

(17-32, 7-17 away)

Pistons 89

(32-15, 18-5 home)

    7:30 PM ET, February 5, 2003

    The Palace of Auburn Hills, Detroit, MI

    1 2 3 4 T
    LAC 18 14 23 2580
    DET 21 35 21 1289

    Top Performers

    LAC: E. Brand 18 Pts, 6 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Stl, 2 Blk

    Det: M. Okur 19 Pts, 11 Reb, 2 Blk

    Okur earns first career double-double

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- The Los Angeles Clippers thought they might have a chance to steal a win Wednesday night with the Detroit Pistons missing All-Star Ben Wallace.

    Instead, Detroit unleashed its secret weapon.

    Rookie Mehmet Okur had the first double-double of his career with 19 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Pistons to an 89-80 victory.

    "Mehmet is getting better and better as he adjusts to this league," Pistons coach Rick Carlisle said. "He's been used to the trapezoidal lane in Europe, but he's getting his low-post game together over here, and he complements it with a nice outside touch."

    Okur, who entered the game averaging 5.1 points and 4.0 rebounds, was proud of his effort.

    "This might be my first double-double, but my goal is to get one every night," he said. "My teammates know where to get me the ball, and I'm getting used to them. Tonight was just great."

    Detroit enters the All-Star break with a four-game winning streak, winning the last three by an average of 27.7 points.

    "This was a game that looked easier on paper than it really was," Carlisle said. "We're playing well, but the guys were serious about it and no one got suckered into thinking it was going to be easy."

    Los Angeles has lost four in a row and seven of eight.

    "I think a lot of guys are looking forward to the All-Star break," Elton Brand said. "We just didn't battle at all in the first half, and the Pistons hit some shots and got a big lead."

    Wallace is in Alabama after the death of his mother and will go straight to Atlanta for Sunday's All-Star game after the funeral Saturday.

    "I told Memo that without Ben, we needed a double-double from him -- or else," Jon Barry said. "He got a lot of good looks tonight, but that is going to change as teams realize that he is a legitimate scoring option. That's going to be his next adjustment."

    Cliff Robinson had 17 points for the Pistons and Corliss Williamson added 12.

    "I think we all feel good about what we have been able to do in the first half of the season," Robinson said. "We just have to get a little hungrier in the second half. We've got a chance to battle for home-court throughout the playoffs, and we have to focus on that."

    Brand led the Clippers with 18 points and Melvin Ely had 14.

    The Clippers kept the game close for 14 minutes, trailing 26-23 early in the second quarter.

    The Pistons, though, went on a 19-4 run to go up by 18. Detroit got six points from Williamson and five from rookie Tayshaun Prince during the surge.

    "That was just a terrible second quarter," Clippers coach Alvin Gentry said. "We couldn't score and we gave up 35 points."

    Detroit led 56-32 at halftime and was up by as many as 27 in the third quarter before taking a 77-55 edge into the final period.

    The Pistons let up in the fourth, but the Clippers never got the margin to single digits until Quentin Richardson's 3-pointer with a second left.

    "I was happy with the way we competed all the way to the end," Gentry said. "Obviously, it is tough playing from 27 down, but we took it from 27 to nine, and that's good."

    Game notes
    Several Pistons wore black No. 3 armbands in tribute to Wallace. ... Los Angeles' Marko Jaric missed the game with the flu. ... Detroit signed veteran forward Danny Manning before the game and placed Juan Sanchez (knee) on the injured list. ... Detroit has won 17 of its last 19 home games against the Clippers. ... The teams split the season series after a 74-72 Clippers win on Nov. 3 in Los Angeles.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 80 89
    FGM-FGA 33-78 (.423) 34-81 (.420)
    3PM-3PA 3-8 (.375) 10-28 (.357)
    FTM-FTA 11-14 (.786) 11-14 (.786)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 11-43 13-41
    Assists 15 22
    Turnovers 16 15
    Steals 6 5
    Blocks 4 5
    Fast Break Points 3 6
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 21 (0/0) 15 (2/0)

    Top Performers

    Los Angeles
    Elton Brand Brand
    Points: 18
    Reb: 6
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 2
    Mehmet Okur Okur
    Points: 19
    Reb: 11
    Ast: 0
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 2