Regular Season Series (Game 4 of 4)

Series starts 11/23

Game 1: Sunday, November 23rd
Game 2: Monday, December 29th
Game 3: Friday, February 6th
Game 4: Tuesday, March 23rd

Pistons 81

(46-26, 22-16 away)

Hornets 82

(37-34, 24-14 home)

    Coverage: COX

    7:00 PM ET, March 23, 2004

    Smoothie King Center, New Orleans, LA

    1 2 3 4 T
    DET 33 12 17 1981
    NO 21 23 13 2582

    Top Performers

    Det: B. Wallace 13 Pts, 15 Reb, 5 Blk

    NO: J. Magloire 17 Pts, 13 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Blk

    New Orleans overcomes Davis' sprained ankle

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- Losing the lead on a late 3-pointer was a familiar feeling for the New Orleans Hornets. But this time they responded with a clutch shot of their own.

    Jamaal Magloire's last-second leaner from 11 feet out lifted New Orleans to an 82-81 victory over Detroit on Tuesday night, snapping the Pistons eight-game winning streak.

    Chauncey Billups' 3-pointer with 17 seconds left had put Detroit ahead, a shot was reminiscent of Vince Carter's 3 that lifted Toronto over New Orleans two days earlier.

    New Orleans responded by going inside to Magloire, whose first shot was blocked out of bounds by Ben Wallace with 6.3 seconds left.

    On the inbounds play, David Wesley went up for a perimeter jumper and Wallace blocked that shot, too, but Magloire grabbed the ball out of the air, turned and swished a jumper. He was mobbed by teammates while several Pistons collapsed onto the court. Hornets coach Tim Floyd, whose team had lost two straight coming in, threw both arms in the air.

    "Wallace had a couple of huge blocks. We were just lucky on the last one that it fell into an open player's hands and Cat got an open shot," Floyd said. "I'm just proud of our guys' effort. We came off two very, very difficult losses and it really would have been easy to hang their heads."

    Pistons' coach Larry Brown questioned whether the Hornets should have been given the ball back after Wallace's first block of the possession. Brown said the ball hit Hornets guard Darrell Armstrong, who was standing out of bounds, before it touched the floor.

    "Until the ball hits the floor it's a live ball. And (the referees) wouldn't even acknowledge it," Brown said. "Now, I'll get a message from the league. But Ben makes two big defensive plays. Magloire made a hell of a shot."

    Magloire finished with 17 points and 13 rebounds, while Wesley scored a game-high 19, going 3-of-4 from 3-point range.

    Baron Davis had 12 points, 10 rebounds and was two assists shy of his first triple-double of the season when he sprained his left ankle diving for a loose ball late in the third period. He did not return and left the arena with a pronounced limp. Team officials said he was day-to-day.

    Armstrong had 14 points for New Orleans, including a runner and two crucial jumpers in the fourth quarter. New Orleans outrebounded Detroit 43-39 in its third victory of the season over the Pistons.

    "It feels good ... because we were rewarded for playing such great defense," Magloire said. "The game was filled with runs and we just kept plugging away until that last possession."

    Richard Hamilton led Detroit with 17 points but was held to only two baskets after the first quarter. Tayshaun Prince and Ben Wallace each had 13, while Billups had 11 and Rasheed Wallace and reserve Mike James added 10 apiece.

    "We've won so many close games ... and we were all confident, all positive that we were going to win," Hamilton said. "We both hit big shots and they hit the biggest one at the end."

    New Orleans hit its first seven shots in the final period, including 3s by Wesley, Armstrong and Robert Traylor -- the last a turnaround rainbow at the shot-clock buzzer -- to take its first lead since midway through the first quarter.

    Wesley, who did not score in his last game, credited better movement off the ball by his teammates, which allowed him to get open off of screens.

    "I wasn't just standing. ... waiting for something to happen. I was able to get some movement and have them chase me a little bit," Wesley said. "I need movement in the offense and I got that tonight."

    The Hornets led 72-66 after Armstrong hit a jumper from just inside the 3-point line at the shot clock buzzer. But a pair of 3-pointers by James and a short jumper by Hamilton helped Detroit briefly go back ahead, 76-74, with just over five minutes remaining.

    Game notes

    Both Wallaces had an embarrassing moment in the first half. Rasheed Wallace bounced a tomahawk jam attempt off the rim so hard it landed in the crowd. He smiled to himself as trotted back on defense. Later, Ben Wallace's free throw feel short of the rim for an airball. ... Magloire scored 10 of the Hornets first 12 points during the game's opening five minutes, but he didn't score again until the last two minutes of the half. ... Magloire has had 13 double-doubles in his last 17 games. ... Detroit allowed 80 points for the first time since a 94-86 loss at Utah on March 1 -- the Pistons' previous loss.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 81 82
    FGM-FGA 31-74 (.419) 31-71 (.437)
    3PM-3PA 5-17 (.294) 9-22 (.409)
    FTM-FTA 14-19 (.737) 11-17 (.647)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-39 9-43
    Assists 19 22
    Turnovers 16 21
    Steals 9 10
    Blocks 8 5
    Fast Break Points 4 4
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 20 (0/0) 19 (1/0)

    Top Performers

    New Orleans
    Ben Wallace Wallace
    Points: 13
    Reb: 15
    Ast: 0
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 5
    Jamaal Magloire Magloire
    Points: 17
    Reb: 13
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 2