The Cleveland Cavaliers headed into Detroit with a six game winning streak. The Pistons were looking for their first win since Brandon Jennings went down with a season ending injury.
Both teams came out flat on the offensive end. The Pistons held the Cavaliers to 8-26 shooting from the field including 0-6 from three point land. Detroit was able to get some easy baskets by pushing the ball after a miss. The Pistons shot 8-18 in the quarter and were up 15-8 early on.
Detroit attacked Cleveland on the inside and Greg Monroe had eight points in the quarter. Andre Drummond was a non-factor as he picked up two fouls in the quarter. Coming off a 35 point effort, D.J. Augustin had two points but five assists in the quarter. Despite a good defensive effort the Pistons had five turnovers which allowed the Cavaliers to stay within reach.
LeBron James got a quick rest in the first quarter but when he returned he attacked the basket and in the process got Drummond to pick up his second foul. The Cavaliers went on a 7-2 run to end the first and were down two points. LeBron scored five of the seven points and assisted on the other basket.
Both teams came out with more energy in the second quarter as they traded baskets early. LeBron attacked the basket with Drummond out while the Pistons moved the ball around for some open shots.
With LeBron on the bench it was Kyrie Irving’s chance to put his mark on the game. He went on a personal 7-0 run to put the Cavs up four points. Irving scored 10 points in the quarter and went into halftime with 14 points. He was very active on the defensive end which allowed the Cavs to force turnovers. LeBron led the Cavs with 16 points.
The Pistons had another five turnovers in the quarter and 10 altogether in the half. They only had nine assists in the half. Greg Monroe led the Pistons with 12 points and six rebounds. Drummond only scored two points but he had four blocks.
After being held under 20 points in the first quarter the Cavaliers outscored the Pistons 30-20 to take a 47-39 lead into halftime. Both teams struggled from beyond the arc with the Cavs shooting 3-14 and the Pistons shooting 2-13.
D.J. Augustin kept the Pistons in the game in the third quarter. He scored 11 points including nine points from beyond the arc. He was aggressive off the pick & roll which allowed him to find his open teammates.
LeBron started the quarter as a facilitator, matching his three assists from the first half. The Cavaliers were much better from beyond the arc in the third quarter knocking down 4-10. As a team the Cavs moved the ball around and had seven assists in the quarter.
The Pistons went into the fourth quarter down 75-64. They did a good job of getting to the line in the third quarter. They went to the line seven times in the quarter while the Cavaliers only took five free throws for the game heading into the fourth.
The Cavaliers started the fourth quarter like they started the game. They played more one on one and started the quarter shooting 4-11. Cleveland’s defense was able to keep the Pistons at bay. Their offense was poor but the effort was there on the defensive end.
The Pistons had a chance in the fourth quarter getting the lead down to six points but the Cavs always had an answer. Detroit shot the ball poorly in the quarter. Every time they would get the lead down Kyrie Irving answered. Irving scored 16 points in the quarter.
Greg Monroe had 17 points and 12 rebounds while D.J. Augustin led the Pistons with 19 points. Drummond missed a lot of layups and finished with 12 points, 16 rebounds and six blocks.
LeBron James had a solid game of 31 points, seven assists and six rebounds. Kyrie Irving was the only Cavaliers’ player to find the stroke from long distance. He was 6-10 from beyond the arc for 38 points to go along with three steals and six assists.
Kevin Love struggled from the field shooting 3-11 and finished with seven points, eight rebounds and four assists.
The Cavaliers only took seven free throws until the Pistons started fouling late in the game. Detroit took 23 free throws but they were held to 40% shooting. The Pistons won the rebounding battle but had 18 turnovers.
The Cavaliers have won seven in a row after beating the Pistons 101-95.
Next up for the Cavaliers is a home game against the Portland Trail Blazers.
Next up for the Pistons is a road game at the Philadelphia 76ers.