Pistons’ Cade Cunningham reacts to first game back from protocol

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Pistons’ Cade Cunningham reacts to first game back from protocol
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  • Detroit Pistons
    Detroit Pistons
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  • Cade Cunningham
    Cade Cunningham
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Detroit Pistons rookie Cade Cunningham on Monday returned from a four-game absence in the health and safety protocol and produced several key plays late to beat the Milwaukee Bucks on the road.

Cunningham recorded 19 points, seven assists, four rebounds and one blocked shot in 37 minutes during the 115-106 win. He went 8-of-15 from the field, including 3-of-7 from 3-point range, to finish a team-high plus-13 on the court.

The No. 1 pick loved being back out on the court with his teammates.

I felt good. I was happy to be back in the game, back with the squad. For a second, it kinda felt like I was playing in cold weather a little bit just how my chest was feeling getting back out there but I felt good. How many minutes did I play? Coach trusted me! I played 37 minutes, I didn’t even realize that. I like that!

Cunningham scored seven of his 19 points in the fourth quarter alone to help keep the Pistons ahead. They entered the final period with a two-point lead and eventually outscored the Bucks 28-21 to pull off the win and snap Milwaukee’s six-game winning streak.

With the Pistons up by five in the final minute, Cunningham sealed the victory in the paint. He initially missed a layup but fought through a couple of defenders to get his own rebound and scored to give the Pistons a seven-point lead.

“You gotta try and make a play,” Cunningham said of the sequence. “I think I drove first. Giannis was at the rim and (I) tried to double-clutch, missed it and scrambled for it and got the ball back. My teammates trusted me with the ball at the end of the game after missing so many games so I appreciate them for that.”

Cunningham was cleared from the health and safety protocol on Saturday but did not play for the Pistons in a win over the San Antonio Spurs to work on his conditioning after missing four games. Other than experiencing a little fatigue, Cunningham looked to show little rust.

Pistons head coach Dwane Casey thought Cunningham had started to find a rhythm on the court prior to entering the protocol. With Cunningham now back in the lineup, the team has its franchise cornerstone back as he looks to build upon his strong rookie campaign.

This post originally appeared on Rookie Wire! Follow us on Facebook!

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