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Game 24: Detroit Pistons @ Houston Rockets [Game Thread]

NBA Regular Season

Game 24



11-12 (3-8 away)

13-10 (5-4 home)

Toyota Center

Rockets Blog: The Dream Shake

December 15, 2009 8:30 PM ET
TV: Fox Sports Detroit Radio: 97.1 The Ticket
Probable starters:
Rodney Stuckey PG Aaron Brooks
Richard Hamilton
SG Shane Battier
Jonas Jerebko SF Chase Buddinger
Jason Maxiell PF Luis Scola
C Chuck Hayes

If there is one team in the NBA that can fairly tell the Pistons to shove it if they try to use the "injury bug" as an excuse, it's the Houston Rockets. They have played all season without the seemingly perma-injured Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady, and tonight they will be without their up and coming star, Trevor Ariza, who will serve his one-game suspension for swinging at Raptors' rookie, DeMar DeRozan.

Rockets coach, Rick Adelman, has no problem blasting the NBA schedule, though. I have to admit, the Pistons have had a series of back-to-backs that seemed a bit crazy. It's a part of the grueling professional sports schedules and you deal with it. To me, it doesn't seem the Rockets are struggling with the schedule as much as they are with the preparation. They are 1-4 in the first game of back-to-backs and 5-0 in the second. With that being said, the scheduling ridiculousness doesn't really apply to tonight's game.

The Pistons are shooting for their sixth win in a row. Richard Hamilton returned to the lineup on Saturday, and although he is sore from playing 30+ minutes, he will start again tonight. Ben Gordon and Will Bynum are game time decisions.

Houston will be starting a Pistons 2nd round draft pick, Chase Budinger, in place of Ariza. We'll get a look at how he matches up with the 2nd round draft pick the Pistons decided to hang on to. Without three of their better players, the Rockets are a very beatable team. Hopefully, Detroit can take advantage and increase their hot streak.

Tip off is 8:30 PM EST and will air on Fox Sports Detroit. Sold preview over at Dream Shake. Return for the game thread.

UPDATE: No Bynum or Gordon tonight.