Jeff Teague, who the Hawks almost traded away during the deadline day showed them what they would have missed if they did so as he lead the Hawks to 118-114 away win over the Pistons at the Palace of the Auburn Hills, Detroit. Al Horford, another player the Hawks supposedly wanted to trade also had a great game. The Hawks improve to 39-29 and are tied for the 4th spot of the Eastern Conference with the Celtics, who were crushed 130-109 by the Thunder today. The Pistons meanwhile are 34-34 with this loss and are tied for the final playoffs spot of the Eastern Conference with the Bulls, who lost 117-96 to the Wizards today.
3 of the Pistons starting 5 posted double-doubles tonight. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope led the scoring for the Pistons as he ended the game with 24 points, 4 rebounds, a steal and 2 blocks. Tobias Harris recorded a double-double of 19 points, 11 rebounds along with 5 assists. Andre Drummond posted yet another double-double with 18 points and 18 rebounds. Reggie Jackson posted a double-double too, with 17 points and 10 assists. Markieff Morris ended the game with 14 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal.
Teague led the way for the Hawks as he ended the game with 22 points, 2 rebounds, 9 assists and a steal. Interestingly, 3 of the Hawks starters ended the game with double-doubles too. Horford added 21 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists and a block. Denis Schroder came off the bench to add 18 points, 7 rebounds and 2 steals. Kent Bazemore posted a double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds. Paul Millsap had another double-double as he ended the game with 13 points, 10 rebounds and 4 assists.
The Hawks opened the game strongly with an 8-3 run. But the Pistons cut the deficit easily and made a 4-0 run at the end to take the first 32-30. The Pistons looked like grabbing the initiative in the second as they took an 8 point lead with an early 12-6 run. But the Hawks took the quarter 31-30 with a 15-7 run to go into the half trailing 62-61. The Hawks looked started the third strongly and led 68-65 with an early 7-3 run. But the Pistons then dominated the hawks with a 17-3 run to establish an 11 point lead with 4 minutes left in the quarter. But the Hawks would not let the Pistons run away as they pulled back with a 16-4 run to take the lead at 87-86. Horford scored 8 points during this run. The Hawks looked to pull away in the early 4th as they made a 9-3 run with the score at 89-89. But the Pistons did not give up as they came back fighting with a 7-0 run of their own to take the lead at 99-98 with 6 minutes to go. The score was 104-103 for the Pistons with 4 minutes to play. The Hawks, this time, would not be denied as they made a game winning 10-0 run as they completely shut down the Pistons offense and made free throws at the other end. They led 113-104 with a minute left. The Pistons made one last run with the hope to win the game as they made it 116-114 as Markieff Morris completed his 3 point play. However, Teague then made both his free throws to secure the game for the Hawks. They closed out the game 118-114.
Next up for the Pistons are the Kings at home on Friday. The Hawks meanwhile will play the Nuggets at home tomorrow.