Celtics 87, Pistons 77

Dana Gauruder, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Detroit's frontcourt trio of Andre Drummond, Josh Smith and Greg Monroe had 15 points apiece and combined for 29 rebounds to lead the Pistons to an 87-77 victory over winless Boston on Sunday at The Palace.
Point guard Brandon Jennings, acquired in a blockbuster deal with Milwaukee during the summer, made his Pistons debut after sitting out the first two games with a partially fractured jaw. He contributed 14 points, four assists and four steals.
Rookie Kelly Olynyk led Boston (0-3) with 15 points. Avery Bradley and Jordan Crawford had 13 apiece.
It was a sloppy affair, with the teams combining for 45 turnovers, including 24 by the Celtics.
The Pistons (2-1) led by 15 early in the third quarter, but the Celtics surged to the lead with 13 straight points during an outburst that spanned the third and fourth quarters. Crawford had five points and assisted on Bradley's 3-pointer that tied it at 63. Jared Sullinger then made two free throws to give Boston just its second lead of the game.
Jennings ended the Pistons' drought with a layup, then fed Kyle Singler for a three-point play to put Detroit back on top 68-65 with 9:16 remaining. Jennings finished Detroit's 10-0 run with a 3-pointer to make it 73-65.
Boston wasn't through. A 10-2 run, capped by a Bradley jumper, pulled the Celtics to 79-77. But the Pistons answered with four free throws and a Smith layup to hang on.
Drummond dunks accounted for Detroit's first three baskets and it went on to lead most of the first half.
Jennings, who wore a protective mask, made his first appearance with 5:39 remaining in the first quarter. He quickly made an impact, making a steal and fast-break layup.
Jennings had another fast-break layup to start the second quarter after a Drummond block. Drummond also played a key role during Detroit's 12-2 run that gave it a 43-30 lead. Drummond had a layup and a dunk before Smith finished the outburst with another layup.
Jennings' jumper in the lane allowed the Pistons to take a 45-35 lead into the locker room.
NOTES: Detroit had won 13 of its last 17 home games against Boston. ... The Pistons wore their alternate Motor City uniforms for the first time. They will wear the uniforms for every Sunday home game this season. ... Celtics guard Rajon Rondo, who tore the ACL in his right knee in January, has increased the tempo of his workouts, but there is still no timetable for his return. "There's no need to rush him back and him not be fully healthy and fully healed," coach Brad Stevens said. "It's a matter of gaining strength in that leg. He's itching to play, let's put it that way." ... Detroit's first-round pick, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, will see his playing time diminish with the return of Jennings. "It's tough to play five guards," coach Mo Cheeks said. "It wouldn't be right, it wouldn't make a lot of sense." ... Boston plays at Memphis on Monday, completing the first of 20 back-to-back games this season.

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