I could get used to this. Well, minus the turnovers.
The 21 woopsies and Milwaukee nearly matching Detroit's hot first half were the only things that prevented the waning minutes from being garbage time. Instead, the Bucks were able to stick around until the very end before Jonas Jerebko fittingly capped the game off with a block on a meaningless Charlie Bell three-pointer as time expired.
Milwaukee did put up their best 2009 Detroit Pistons fight and overcame a 17-point fourth quarter deficit to pull within seven with a minute to go and got it to six with 25 seconds, but Detroit was able to hit four of their final six free throws to clinch it.
Aside from the turnovers, this was the Pistons best all-around game so far this season. They shot a season-best 57% from the field, dished out a season-high 28 assists, and had six players in double figures. They also grabbed 46 rebounds, 16 more than Milwaukee.
It kind of evoked feelings of the good ol' days, especially when a certain someone was throwing down Earth shaking slams like this:
Yeah, that's the decrepit Ben Wallace that I, along with many other Pistons fans, didn't think had anything left but a few games of Bingo. I love the Kelser quote in that video: "They signed him, folks, as a mentor...a locker room guy. Yeah, right."
In fact, Big Ben looks better on offense than I ever remember him being. That's mainly due to some of the old man, craft passes he's been able to serve to his teammates for easy looks. Tonight, he had 11 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, and three blocks. Mmm.
Rodney Stuckey finished as the Pistons leading scorer with 19 points on 7-11 shooting. He also had six rebounds and nine assists (opposite four turnovers). My newest Yahoo fantasy basketball player, Luke Ridnour, had the game-high 21 points and nine assists off the Bucks bench.
More, if you make the jump.
- Jonas Jerebko continues to get better with every game. He's a beast on the defensive side of things and he's starting to make it happen on offense. In the first quarter he had 10 points and six of them were from the charity stripe.
- From what I saw tonight, I thought Jason Maxiell played great. I don't think the box score does him much justice, though. He did have five turnovers, but I think his +14 (best on the team) is a stat that is pretty indicative of how well he played tonight.
- Charlie Villanueva made his return tonight with a mask to protect his recently restructured nose. He got himself into early foul trouble, but played well in minimal minutes. He was a point away from being the Pistons 7th player in double figures. As for the mask, as expected, he was fidgeting with it all game. I don't expect it to be a staple for him like it has become for Rip. He'll burn that thing the first chance the Docs say he can.
- Rodney Stuckey was T'ed up when he and Brandon Jennings exchanged some unpleasantries.
- Carlos Delfino, a former Piston who I used to be very fond of, kept the Bucks in it early. He seemed to match every spurt the Pistons had in the first two quarters with a few buckets of his own. He only finished with 15 points on 6-12 shooting, despite his hot start, but judging by the perma-smerk on his face, you would have thought he scored 30, what he believes to be his season average. Meh, a jersey change can do a lot to one's opinion of a guy.
- Washington Wizards come into town on Sunday. Tip off slated for 6 PM EST. It will be aired on NBATV.
- Inspiration for my "elementary" title, if you didn't pick up on it:
- Box score
- Brew Hoop view