Blake Griffin explodes for 50 points as Pistons outlast 76ers in OT
DETROIT — Blake Griffin scored a career-high 50 points and had the game-winner after he was fouled on a driving layup with 1.8 seconds left as Detroit topped Philadelphia 133-132 in a wild overtime thriller on Tuesday night.
JJ Redick’s four-point play with 5.6 seconds left in overtime set up Griffin’s dramatics, while Joel Embiid, who had 33 points and 11 rebounds, missed a potential game-winner at the buzzer.
Redick had 30 points and scored a 3-pointer while being fouled by Reggie Jackson after the Pistons point guard made two free throws to take a 130-128 lead.
The 76ers were without Ben Simmons, out because of back tightness.
Griffin faked a handoff on the final play and drove the lane for the basket, getting fouled by Robert Covington. He made the ensuing free throw for the win.
Griffin was 20 of 35 from the field, going 5 for 10 on 3-pointers, scoring his most points as a member of the Pistons for the second straight game.
He scored 22 points in the second quarter and had 28 in the half, despite missing his first six free throws. He also dunked on Embiid with 3:50 to go in the second quarter.
Jackson had 23 points and Ish Smith scored 21 for the Pistons, who are 3-0 for the first time since 2015-16, the last time they made the playoffs.
In overtime, Griffin and Smith had 3-pointers to give the Pistons a 126-120 lead. But Redick had a traditional three-point play and then a 3-pointer as the 76ers tied it at 128-all with 2:03 left.
Detroit took the lead for the first time since late in the first quarter as two Griffin free throws put the Pistons up 111-110 with 3:09 remaining.
Then, down the stretch of regulation, the teams traded the lead six times, with three ties.
After Embiid missed a 3-pointer and Reggie Bullock missed a runner in the lane, Dario Saric had an open look on a 3-pointer but missed it in the closing seconds, forcing overtime.
Markelle Fultz tied his career high with 13 points, knocking down a long two-pointer for the game’s first points and later making his second career 3-pointer.
Reggie Jackson added 17 points for the Pistons.
76ers: Rookie guard Landry Shamet made his first career start for Philadelphia. The 26th pick out of Wichita State had five points in 24 minutes. . Mike Muscala, acquired in a three-team trade from Atlanta this offseason, made his debut of for the 76ers after missing the first three games with a sprained ankle. He scored five points in 17 minutes.
Pistons: Andre Drummond was ejected with 40.8 seconds left in regulation after his second technical foul. . Glenn Robinson III, acquired as a free agent from Indiana, did not play after logging 33 minutes combined in the first two games.
BEN’S BAD BACK
76ers coach Brett Brown said Simmons is questionable for Wednesday at Milwaukee after leaving Saturday’s game against Orlando in the first quarter.
“He didn’t feel as comfortable as we would’ve wanted,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said before Tuesday’s game. “It’s just one of those thighs that with a back-to-back game and giving him the best chance we could give him to possibly play (Wednesday), we felt like it was wise to sit him tonight.”
76ers: Wednesday they will play Milwaukee, which has won its first three games. The Bucks are averaging 118.3 points per game, which was tied for second-most in the Eastern Conference entering Tuesday’s games.
Pistons: Thursday they host Cleveland, which will be on a back-to-back after playing host to Brooklyn on Wednesday.
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