Cade Cunningham makes debut as Pistons get first win
Jerami Grant had 22 points and the host Detroit Pistons overcame a spotty debut by Cade Cunningham to collect their first victory, a 110-103 triumph over the Orlando Magic on Saturday.
Cunningham, the top pick in the draft, was sidelined the first four games with an ankle injury. He played 19 minutes, mostly in the first half, and shot 1-for-8 from the field while scoring two points. He added seven rebounds and two assists.
Kelly Olynyk contributed 18 points, five rebounds and four assists, while Josh Jackson tossed in 13 points with seven rebounds for Detroit. Saddiq Bey also had 13 points and seven rebounds, and Trey Lyles added 12 points. Isaiah Stewart chipped in 11 points and eight rebounds. Grant also had seven rebounds and five assists.
Detroit had lost its first four games this season.
Franz Wagner, the eighth pick in this year’s draft, led Orlando with a season-high 19 points. Cole Anthony supplied 15 points and 10 rebounds, while Moritz Wagner, Franz’s older brother, added 13 points and five rebounds off the bench.
The Pistons led 48-47 at halftime despite committing 13 turnovers. They were fueled by a 35-21 edge in rebounding.
Cunningham didn’t score his first NBA basket until 5:10 remaining in the half when he drove to the basket for a layup. He found other ways to contribute, grabbing seven rebounds and dishing out two assists.
Orlando reeled off 10 straight points midway through the third quarter to take a 62-55 lead. Suggs scored his first two baskets of the game on a pair of layups. Franz and Moritz Wagner finished the run with 3-point makes.
Detroit regained the lead at 73-70 on a corner 3 by Grant which was part of a 19-1 run. Olynyk completed the outburst with a driving dunk before Franz Wagner drilled a 3 just before the quarter ended. Detroit still brought an 82-73 lead into the final quarter.
The Pistons’ lead grew to 15 less than two minutes into the fourth on Lyles’ free throws.
Jackson’s 3-pointer with 6:31 left lifted the Pistons to a 100-83 lead.
The Magic didn’t get closer than the final margin the rest of the way.