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Published: Thursday, 1/15/2009

Pistons drop third straight game

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Pacers forward Danny Granger, left, is fouled by Pistons center Rasheed Wallace as he goes up for a shot in overtime. Pacers forward Danny Granger, left, is fouled by Pistons center Rasheed Wallace as he goes up for a shot in overtime.
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INDIANAPOLIS For once, overtime was a good time for the Indiana Pacers.

Danny Granger scored 24 points and made the tying shot late in regulation in the Indiana Pacers 110-106 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night. It was Indiana s first overtime win in five tries this season.

So many times, we had the game sealed, and we went into overtime and we ended up losing, Granger said. We re on the other side of it this time.

T.J. Ford scored 23 points, and Troy Murphy added 18 points and 13 rebounds to help the Pacers snap a three-game losing streak.

Rodney Stuckey led Detroit with 30 points, Allen Iverson had 23 points, and Rasheed Wallace added 17 points and 15 rebounds. The Pistons have lost three in a row, including a two-point loss at home against Charlotte on Tuesday night.

We ve got to finish games, Stuckey said. That s pretty much it. We re kicking ourselves in the butt. We keep losing games like this, it s going to hurt us at the end of the season. Hopefully, we can figure it out and get it turned around.

The Pacers had lost eight in a row against the Pistons, dating to Dec. 29, 2006.

Murphy s second 3-pointer of the extra period put the Pacers up 103-98 with just under 2 minutes to play.

Detroit s Antonio McDyess made a layup to cut it 103-100, but Ford came back with a jumper that bounced several times before going in with 38.5 seconds left to make it 105-100. The Pacers made five of seven free throws in the final 30 seconds.

With Detroit leading 93-91 late in regulation, Indiana s Jarrett Jack drove to the basket and missed a layup. He thought he was fouled, and was issued a technical foul for arguing the no-call. Detroit s Tayshaun Prince missed the technical free throw, but the Pistons retained possession because of the technical. Iverson missed a long jumper, but Prince rebounded. Prince missed a jumper, and Indiana s Jeff Foster rebounded with 11 seconds left to give Indiana a chance to tie or win.

Granger hit the tying step-back jumper from near the free-throw line, over Prince, with 3.9 seconds left.

When you re going 1-on-1 like that, they know I like to go to my right a lot, Granger said. My counter to that is to my left, and create space for my shot. I m 6-8, 6-9, so I can get up and get it off and I got a good look at it.

Prince, an Olympian who has been on the NBA s all-defense second-team for four straight years, was impressed with Granger s shot. Granger made just six of 20 field goals, but made the most important shot he took.

I made him take a tough shot, Prince said. He hadn t been shooting well throughout the game, but he was still able to knock it down. That just shows you the kind of confidence he has, and more importantly, how well he s been playing.

Detroit s Richard Hamilton missed an open jumper from the left baseline, but the ball went out of bounds off an Indiana player, and Detroit set up for a final chance with 0.7 seconds left. Wallace threw up an awkward shot that missed everything, and the game went to overtime.

Hamilton was disappointed that his mid-range jumper, a shot he s known for making, didn t drop.

It was a good look, Hamilton said. It s tough, because I usually knock that down. We had an opportunity in overtime, but we didn t get it done.

Iverson said the Pistons made the right move to get the ball to Hamilton.

Rip had a good look and just couldn t knock it down, he said. We ll take that shot any night, but it shouldn t come down to that.

Indiana improved to 6-8 in games decided by three points or fewer.

For us to get a stop with 4 seconds left in regulation and then win in overtime really gets a big monkey off our back, Murphy said. Hopefully, this gets us going a little bit.



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