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Pistons Outlast Hornets In OT

Friday night the Hornets could do no wrong. A 100-71 win over the Utah Jazz was more than a single victory in the win column. It was, in many ways, a statement. Winning the physical battle against a team that had owned them for the past few seasons was as pleasing as anything a Hornet fan has seen this season. However, the Hornets were due for a letdown. Playing a bad Piston team they beat earlier this season was the epitome of a trap game. Despite solid performances from Chris Paul (23 points, 10 assists) and David West (32 points, 9 rebounds), the Hornets could not overcome a solid shooting night from the perimeter oriented Pistons. In overtime, when a play had to be made, Will Bynum made it.

Will Bynum’s driving layup with 7.4 seconds left in overtime helped the Detroit Pistons to a 111-108 victory over the New Orleans Hornets on Sunday night.Detroit trailed by one after a pair of free throws by David West with 15.0 seconds remaining. After a brief scramble, Bynum picked up the ball in the backcourt and went straight to the basket, getting a hard pick from Jason Maxiell along the way and scoring while drawing a foul.

Bynum missed the free throw, and New Orleans called a timeout, but Maxiell tipped away the inbound pass, outfought West for the ball and dunked with 0.5 seconds remaining.

The Pistons were without guards Richard Hamilton (upset stomach) and Rodney Stuckey (toe). Tracy McGrady started for the second time all season, but didn’t play after halftime because of a sore groin.

Instead, Bynum did a terrific job filling in for Stuckey. Bynum finished with 21 points and nine assists, and his final basket made up for a couple of last-minute miscues that nearly cost Detroit the game.

If the Hornets want to be taken seriously, this is the exact kind of a game they must win. Regardless of an emotional letdown, you can’t lose to a bad basketball team that is missing its two best players. They’ll try to bounce back tomorrow as they visit Darren Collison and the Pacers. Tip-off in Indiana is set for 6:00.

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