NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, December 18th (All times Eastern)
Detroit Pistons (12-14) at Boston Celtics (12-14), 7:30 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Detroit Pistons will try to knock off another division leader on Wednesday when they visit TD Bank Garden to meet the Boston Celtics.
The C's, despite a sub-.500 record, are tops in the Atlantic by a game over the Toronto Raptors.
On Monday, Detroit handed the Indiana Pacers, the team with the best record in the Eastern Conference, their first home loss of the season. The Pistons, who also have beaten the Miami Heat on the road this season, knocked off Indiana, 101-96.
It was especially gritty victory considering the Pistons were coming off a heartbreaking overtime home loss to the Portland Trail Blazers the night before.
"Tonight was a character game. We had a chance to win last night, so we knew tonight was going to be a test against a tough team and we were able to get the win," said forward Greg Monroe. "I thought we wanted the ball more tonight."
Josh Smith was sensational with 30 points and a solid defensive effort, helping to hold Paul George to 17 points.
Monroe had a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds and Brandon Jennings finished with 18 points and eight assists, compared to just one turnover.
The Celtics have won two in a row and Wednesday's game will be the fourth of a five-game homestand. Boston is 2-1 with the only loss coming in Doc Rivers' return one week ago.
On Monday, the C's held off the Minnesota Timberwolves, 101-97.
Jared Sullinger led the way for the Celtics with 24 points and 11 rebounds. He also handed out five assists and made a 3-pointer as his all-around game is becoming very impressive.
"He's a scorer. He's always been a scorer. He's been a scorer as long as I've known him. It never surprises me when scorers make plays," Boston head coach Brad Stevens said of Sullinger.
Avery Bradley had 19 points and Jordan Crawford added 15 for the Celtics. They were the only players in double figures as starters Jeff Green (8 points) and Brandon Bass (0 points) struggled.
The bench didn't have a high-scoring player, but all six second-unit guys saw about 12 minutes of action and each had at least four points.
The Celtics close the homestand with the Washington Wizards on Saturday night.
The Pistons bettered the Celtics by 10 (87-77) in Detroit on Nov. 3, but Boston is 5-1 in its last six at home against the Pistons.
12/18 10:29:45 ET