NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - If the Pelicans wanted to get back into the Western Conference playoff race they needed to beat the Pistons at home. Well, New Orleans exhibited once again they can’t stay consistent, losing to the Pistons, 98-94.
Jrue Holiday scored 29 points, and Jahlil Okafor, filling in for an injured Anthony Davis, dropped in 17 for the Pelicans (22-26).
The Pistons led 95-87 with 1:32 remaining, but the Pels cut the lead to three with a Holiday lay-in and a Darius Miller three-pointer. Frank Jackson missed a 3-point attempt to tie it late in the contest.
“You would think if, defensively, we could hold a team to 98 points and 40% shooting, it should be a game that you win and we just struggled offensively throughout the night. Not very good ball movement and I know we ended up with 20 assists, but that’s really not an accurate stat because a lot of those were desperation assists, and I mean moving the ball at the end where we don’t have any other options. We just struggled the whole night. And then at the end, we make a push back, you’ve got to be able to make the game-winning plays, as we call them. We didn’t do that," said Pels Head Coach Alvin Gentry.
Blake Griffin scored a game-high 37points for Detroit (21-26). Reggie Jackson chipped in with 17 points for the Pistons.
“Again, he’s carrying us. Handling the basketball, making good decisions..just doing everything we could ask a player to do – a franchise player," said Pistons Head Coach Dwayne Casey. “He’s been great. He sets the tone for us offensively. And he’d probably have more assists if we knocked down some of these shots and kick-outs we have. Again, we’re still trying to get a balance with that, with kicking it out. But he did a fantastic job. Not only offensively, but defensively with (Julius) Randle...not letting him get in to his sweet spot, back us down, and get low post position.”
New Orleans hits the road to play the Thunder Thursday night.