AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – Rodney Stuckey scored 20 points, and the Detroit Pistons sent the Dallas Mavericks to their sixth consecutive loss, 103-89 on Monday.
Tayshaun Prince added 19 points and rookie Greg Monroe had 16 points and nine rebounds for Detroit, which has won three straight for the first time all season. The Pistons shot 65 percent in the second half, including a stretch of 11 straight shots without a miss in the third quarter as they turned a close game into a surprising rout.
Dirk Nowitzki scored 32 points for Dallas in his second game back from a sprained right knee. Jason Terry added 18 points, but no other Maverick was in double figures.
Nowitzki returned Saturday night from a nine-game absence, but he was ejected in the third quarter of an 89-70 loss to Memphis. He began making up for lost time right away against the Pistons, scoring 18 points in the first half.
Detroit kept the rest of the Mavericks under control, holding them without a field goal for nearly five minutes and taking a 41-30 lead. Dallas answered by scoring the final seven points of the half, including a 3-pointer and two free throws by Nowitzki.
Nowitzki added eight more points in the third quarter, but the Pistons shot 16 of 22 in the period. An alley-oop from Prince to Chris Wilcox made it 57-47, and a 3-pointer by Ben Gordon put Detroit ahead by 16.
The Pistons continued their torrid shooting in the fourth. The 6-foot-11 Monroe stole the ball from guard Jose Barea on the perimeter and dribbled all the way to the other end for a dunk, and a 3-pointer by Charlie Villanueva made it 87-69.
A perimeter shot by Gordon put Detroit ahead 95-75.
Although Nowitzki looked healthy, Dallas was without center Tyson Chandler for a second straight game. He also missed the loss to Memphis with an illness.
Detroit center Ben Wallace sat out with a left ankle injury.
The Pistons have played much better lately, with younger players like Monroe contributing alongside veterans like Prince. Detroit has benched Richard Hamilton, who sat out for the fourth straight game. Fans chanted, "We want Rip!" on a couple occasions in the first half, but the new rotation appears to be paying dividends.
Detroit turned the ball over only once in the second half.
The Mavericks' next chance to stop their slide isn't likely to be any easier. They host the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night, then play at Chicago on Thursday night.
NOTES: Prince surpassed 8,000 career points during the first half. ... Gordon addressed the crowd before the game, inviting fans to take a moment to reflect on the life and legacy of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. ... Carlisle was asked before the game if Nowitzki's ejection Saturday was out of character. "The guy must have blown the call pretty bad for that to happen," Carlisle said.