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Garnett, Celtics Fall Back to .500 With Loss to Pistons

Kevin Garnett (Flickr/Keith Allison)

After winning six straight games, the Boston Celtics were looking to be one of the teams contending for home-court advantage in the playoffs, but three straight losses is not what the Doc ordered. Two of those three losses were to teams well below .500 and the game against the Chicago Bulls on Friday night should have been won in regulation except for some bad play making in the final minute.

In Detroit Sunday, the Celtics trailed by just four at the half, but the whole team came out sluggish and looked unmotivated in their 103-88 loss to the Pistons. Jeff Green and Kevin Garnett each scored 16 points, but 23 of those 32 points came in the first half.

The Celtics came out slow and trailed 36-18 with 9:45 remaining in the first half. After a 17-4 run, Garnett and crew were only down 40-35 before tying the game 48-48 with two of Courtney Lee‘s 12 first half points. The Pistons ended the half on a 4-0 run to give the home team the 52-48 edge.

The second half started off somewhat well for the Celtics as the lead went down to one at 55-54 after two straight baskets from Avery Bradley, who finished with six points in 19 minutes, but the sloppiness came back to hurt them throughout the second half. The Celtics turned the ball over 18 times and were outscored 51-40 after the break.

Paul Pierce and the bench failed to really show up in the second half. Pierce finished with only 10 points in his 36 minutes without a single free throw attempt. Jason Terry and Brandon Bass combined for 24 minutes and 1-of-6 shooting. This type of production and playing time is something that coach Doc Rivers needs to stray away from if this team hopes to get off this losing streak anytime soon.

Rajon Rondo had another solid game, but he turned the ball over way too many times to be effective. He finished with eight points, nine rebounds and 15 assists while turning the ball over nine times. He was also only 4-of-16 from the field.

Six players scored in double figures for the Pistons. Andre Drummond led the way with 16 points and seven rebounds. Will Bynum, Brandon Knight and Greg Monroe each added 15 points. Monroe also collected 11 rebounds for the double-double. Tayshaun Prince was 2-of-2 from distance with 14 points. Kyle Singler finished with 13 points, eight rebounds and five assists.

The next game for the men in green will be on Tuesday night against the Cleveland Cavaliers when they look to snap this three-game skid.

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