Aldridge pushes Blazers past Pistons
Portland, OR – LaMarcus Aldridge posted 13 of his 31 points in the final quarter and had 12 rebounds to pace the Portland Trail Blazers to a 112-101 win over the Detroit Pistons.
J.J. Hickson added 18 points and 15 rebounds for the Blazers, who have won back-to-back contests. Wesley Matthews and Nicolas Batum each scored 17 and Damian Lillard ended with 14 points and seven assists.
Rodney Stuckey had 32 points for the Pistons, but suffered a cut above his right eye after bumping heads with Lillard. Will Bynum chipped in 23 points, but the Pistons suffered their eighth straight loss.
Detroit held a 30-24 lead after the first quarter and was up as many as 11 in the second at 52-41 following a Jason Maxiell's layup with 3:28 left. Portland closed the gap to 57-52 at the half.
It was tight throughout the third quarter, and Aldridge sank a bank shot for a 77-75 Portland edge in the final minute. That was the score going to the fourth.
"We've been getting out to slow starts all year," Hickson admitted. "We picked it up in the third quarter."
Batum's 3-pointer capped a 7-0 push early in the fourth for a 90-81 difference.
After falling behind by 12 later in the quarter, the Pistons got within 99-97 on Bynum's jumper with under three minutes remaining.
Batum responded by draining a 3-point shot to start a game-sealing 10-2 spurt. Aldridge finished the burst with a 3-point play with 1:11 to go.
"We just have to come out and get more stops defensively because that's what hurt us tonight," Stuckey said.
Detroit has lost five straight at Portland ... Greg Monroe had 14 points, nine rebounds and six assists for Detroit, which shot 52.6 percent from the field ... Portland missed just one of its 24 foul shots and held a 45-33 edge on the glass.