This game will be remembered for a third quarter that started with five fouls in nine seconds. This comes after Adam Silver made a statement about Hack-a-Dre and how fans are not happy with it aesthetically. Well, that third quarter was ugly.
The Pistons started the game out strong, going up by 12-4 early on in the first quarter. They would eventually extend that lead to 10 by the end of the first quarter, winning the quarter 33-23. Houston would fight back in the second quarter and win it by one, taking a nine point deficit into the locker room at the half.
Then the third quarter happened. I am not sure what was said during the half in the Rockets' locker room, but they decided to put the Pistons into the penalty within the first 10 seconds of the quarter. All five fouls by K.J. McDaniels. I am pretty sure that a team has committed that many fouls in 10 seconds before, but in the first 10 of a quarter? The goal was to go to Hack-A-Dre and get him out of the game. By the 9:22 mark, Stan Van Gundy finally took him out after only going 5-16 at the free throw line and Houston pulling to within one.
However, the Pistons were able to escape the quarter with a six point lead still. During that 2:38 span, the Pistons did not take a shot. In the rest of the quarter, they were 7-for-17. What is interesting, however, is that though Drummond attempted 16 free throws in less than three minutes, and the Rockets were in the penalty the rest of the quarter, the Pistons would only attempt six more free throws the rest of the quarter, making five.
The Pistons started to gain a larger lead in the start of the fourth quarter, then the Rockets would come back. Not long after Andre came back into the game, they went back to Hack-A-Dre. This time he would go 6-for-8 and would stay in the game. However, not much later, they went back to it. This time he missed four in a row and was replaced by Aron Baynes.
Regardless, the Pistons would win the game by nine points. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope was able to exploit James Harden's defense some, scoring 22 points (on 18 shots). Drummond still had a double-double with 17 points (on four shots -- EFFICIENCY!!!) and 11 rebounds. Reggie Jackson would score 17 points on 7-for-15 shooting to go with nine assists and five rebounds. Marcus Morris had 22 and Ersan Ilyasova scored 18. Harden led the Rockets with 33 points (12-for-12 from the free throw line).