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Pistons 117, Cavaliers 99

The SportsXchange

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Rookie Kyle Singler had a career-high 20 points as the Detroit Pistons ended a two-game losing streak with a 117-99 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers at The Palace on Friday.

Brandon Knight contributed 20 points, six rebounds and 10 assists for Detroit while Greg Monroe recorded his 18th double-double with 18 points and 16 rebounds. Rodney Stuckey added 14 points for the Pistons (18-28), who clinched the four-game season series by winning the first three meetings.

Detroit led by as much as 19 and never trailed.

Tristan Thompson led Cleveland (13-34), which had won three of its last four, with 19 points and nine rebounds. Marreese Speights had 17 points while Kyrie Irving, the NBA's sixth-leading scorer at 23.9 points per game, was limited to 14.

Stuckey scored 10 third-quarter points as the Pistons gained a comfortable advantage. He converted a layup off a Monroe feed to make it 68-58. He soon followed with four free throws before backcourt partner Knight stretched the advantage to 15, 79-64, with a 3-pointer and two free throws. When Knight made a pull-up jumper in the final minute of the quarter, Detroit's lead was up to 19, 85-66.

Cleveland refused to go quietly, slicing the deficit under double digits when C.J. Miles' 3-pointer made it 99-90 with 4:43 remaining. Cavs coach Byron Scott had his players intentionally foul Andre Drummond and Charlie Villanueva during the comeback bid but even though they missed often from the line, the Pistons never had an anxious moment.

Knight, who was averaging 23.5 points and 6.0 assists this season against the Cavs, had 11 points, five rebounds and five assists in the first half as the Pistons led 54-47 at halftime. Detroit had a 34-22 advantage in points in the paint but hurt itself at the free-throw line, missing eight of 14 attempts.

Irving, who missed the first two meetings with injuries, had 13 points by halftime but the Cavs shot just 37.5 percent.

NOTES: The Cavs played without reserves Luke Walton (personal reasons) and Daniel Gibson (sprained toe). ... Point guard Jose Calderon, acquired from Toronto by the Pistons on Wednesday in a three-team deal, did not play because of visa issues. Detroit coach Lawrence Frank said Calderon would start when he's cleared to play and Brandon Knight would move to shooting guard. "What this trade does to us, the adjustments will be - if we can defend - we'll be able to get out in the open court more," Frank said. "We'll run more multiple pick and rolls because we'll always have two (ball-handling) guards on the floor." ... The Cavaliers begin a seven-game homestand against Oklahoma City on Saturday. ... Entering Friday's game, Drummond had eight double-doubles this season, a league high for rookies. Cleveland's Tyler Zeller has four, tying him for fourth place among first-year players. ... The Cavs were allowing opponents to shoot a league-high 47.3 percent. ... Before Friday's game, Cleveland forward Speights was averaging 13 points since being acquired from Memphis. ... Detroit's starting frontcourt of Monroe, Jason Maxiell and Singler has appeared in every game this season.
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