Jennings leads Pistons over Celtics
Boston, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - Brandon Jennings scored 28 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer, and the Detroit Pistons came back from 21 down to beat the Boston Celtics 107-106 on Wednesday.
After Jared Sullinger hit a 3-pointer to give Boston a 105-104 lead with 1:01 remaining, Jennings knocked one down at the other end for a two-point Detroit lead with 46.7 seconds left.
Sullinger missed one of two free throws later on but the Celtics still had a chance to win the game. Jeff Green was guarded closely by Josh Smith, however, after an inbounds pass with 5.0 ticks on the clock and Green missed a driving layup at the buzzer.
"The bottom line is to try to get it to a guy you think can make a play," said Celtics coach Brad Stevens. "We've all seen (Green) make those plays time and again so I don't have a problem with the shot we got."
Jennings had 14 assists, Smith scored 20 and Andre Drummond had 14 points and 16 rebounds for the Pistons, who improved to 6-1 in their last seven games on the road, including Monday's win over Eastern Conference-leading Indiana.
Sullinger had 19 points to lead the Celtics, who had a two-game winning streak snapped. Jordan Crawford added 17 points in the loss, Avery Bradley scored 14 and Green had 13.
The Pistons, after trailing by as many as 21 early in the second quarter, took their first lead of the game at 74-73 with 5:01 remaining in the third when Jennings completed a four-point play after being fouled by Bradley on a 3 from the top of the key.
"We picked our energy up, got back in the game," said Pistons coach Maurice Cheeks. "I thought we made plays, got our defense back, got set a little bit and that changed the game for us."
They were within 81-80 going into the fourth quarter and led by as many as seven before the Celtics got back into it with an 8-0 run led by Sullinger.
Detroit outscored Boston 84-64 after the first quarter.
"They out-played us for 36 minutes out of 48," said Stevens. "We outplayed them for 12."
Indeed, the Celtics shot almost 70 percent in the first quarter, ending it with a 16-3 run punctuated by Sullinger's tip-in at the buzzer off an inbound pass from Gerald Wallace.
Wallace threw the pass from the sideline with 0.2 seconds remaining, finding his teammate on the opposite side of the rim. Sullinger was able to tip it in despite being fronted by the 6-foot-10 Josh Harrellson, ending Boston's best quarter of the season.
It gave the Celtics a 42-23 lead. The Pistons cut into their deficit with a 7-2 burst to start the second quarter, sparked by Kyle Singler's 3-pointer, and were within 11 points at halftime after Kentavious Caldwell-Pope beat the buzzer to make it 63-52.
The game was played amid reports Atlantic Division-leading Boston was in trade talks with the Houston Rockets for center Omer Asik ... The Celtics are 2-2 on a five-game homestand. They face Washington on Saturday ... The Pistons return home for two games this weekend starting Friday against Charlotte.
12/19 00:59:29 ET