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Trail Blazers 112, Pistons 101

The SportsXchange

PORTLAND -- LaMarcus Aldridge scored 31 points and grabbed 12 rebounds and J.J. Hickson collected 18 points and 15 boards in Portland's 112-101 victory over Detroit on Saturday night at the Rose Garden.

Nicolas Batum contributed 17 points, 6 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 blocked shots for the Trail Blazers (31-34), who rallied from a five-point halftime deficit to win their second straight game.

Rodney Stuckey scored 32 points and Will Bynum came off the bench to add 23 for the Pistons (23-45), who lost for the eighth straight time and finished their road trip 0-4.

Trailing by five at the half, Portland scored the first nine points of the third quarter to go on top 61-57. Detroit steadied and went back in front 75-73 late in the quarter before Portland took a 77-75 lead into the final period.

The Blazers were ahead 92-83 with seven minutes left, then took the lead to 99-87 two minutes later.

The Pistons charged back, scoring 10 in a row to get to within 99-97 with 2:50 remaining.

Batum buried a 3-pointer from the corner to make it 102-97, but Jason Maxiell's driving layup cut the margin to 102-99. Aldridge's rebound basket and a pair of Wesley Matthews free throws made it it 106-99 with 1:39 to go. After a Detroit miss, a three-point play by Aldridge on Portland's next possession wrapped things up.

Detroit jumped to a 28-20 lead before settling for a 30-24 advantage going into the second quarter. The Pistons, getting into transition for 14 fast-break points in the half, led 56-46 with 1:35 left before settling for a 57-52 advantage.

Stuckey had 17 points, sinking 5 of 9 shots from the field and 6 of 7 at the line before the break.

NOTES: Guard Brandon Knight, who scored 26 points in Detroit's 108-101 win over Portland on Nov. 26, missed his second straight game with a sprained ankle. "We'll keep our fingers crossed about Monday (against Brooklyn)," said Brian Hill, acting as head coach in the absence of Lawrence Frank, who is not with the club while tending to his ill wife. ... Jose Calderon will start in place of Knight, who held Portland rookie Damian Lillard to 12 points on 4-for-18 shooting in the teams' first meeting. ... Detroit's starting small forward, rookie Kyle Singler, makes his NBA debut in his home state. Singler prepped at South Medford High. "He has done a great job," Hill said. "We're pleasantly surprised. Kyle very seldom makes mistakes in terms of understanding the game plan or trying to do too many things on the floor. He is technically a very solid player, does all the right things at the right times, and he knocks down his open shots. He has exceeded expectations." ... Portland begins a five-game road trip Monday at Philadelphia. "This trip coming up is difficult," Portland coach Terry Stotts said. "We're still in the mix for the playoffs. We have to get a win tonight to get us a little momentum going into the trip." ... Rookie forward Victor Claver (ankle) will miss his fourth straight game and will not accompany the Blazers on the upcoming trip.

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