Knicks return home to host Pistons

( - The New York Knicks return home from a successful Texas trip Tuesday night to host the Detroit Pistons at Madison Square Garden.

The Knicks went 2-1 against the league's three Texas teams, but it could've easily been 3-0. J.R. Smith hoisted an ill-advised late shot that hurt in a loss to the Houston Rockets, but the Knicks sandwiched wins over the San Antonio Spurs and Dallas Mavericks around the loss.

On Sunday, the Knicks handled the Mavs, 92-80. The 80 points against marked the second-lowest output an opposing team had against the Knicks so far this season.

Carmelo Anthony tallied 19 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Kenyon Martin added 14 points and six rebounds off the bench for New York, which had dropped four of its last five coming in.

"I think our defense set the tone early," Knicks head coach Mike Woodson said.

The Knicks held the Mavs to 17 points in the first quarter and only 18 in the second. They took a 17-point lead into halftime and withstood a third-quarter rally from Dallas.

Andrea Bargnani (13), Amare Stoudemire (11) and Tim Hardaway, Jr. (10) also scored in double figures.

The Pistons have lost four in a row, including two at home and two on the road. Detroit has actually dropped five straight at home, so luckily the Pistons hit the road for three straight.

On Sunday, the Pistons got destroyed at The Palace of Auburn Hills, 112-84, by the Memphis Grizzlies.

Detroit took a five-point lead into the locker room Sunday afternoon, then got absolutely thrashed in the third quarter. Memphis took that period, 28-11, then won the final 12 minutes, 33-17, for the easy win.

It was the Pistons first game in six days, and the rust appeared.

"All the hard work we put in these past few days to just fall short like that and let them come out and do what they did in the second half; and come out with the win was definitely tough to swallow," said center Andre Drummond.

Drummond finished with 15 points and 14 rebounds, but Greg Monroe was actually Detroit's leading scorer with 19. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope notched 14 points and Josh Smith chipped in 13. Brandon Jennings handed out 11 assists in a losing effort.

Rodney Stuckey missed the game with a sore right shoulder and is listed as day-to-day.

The Pistons snapped a seven-game losing streak to the Knicks with a win in Detroit on Nov. 19. New York has taken seven straight in MSG.