Both teams started out sloppily, with unforced turnovers by each team in the first three minutes, but unlike the HEAT, the Pistons were able to sink a few. The HEAT hit one of their first eight shots as Detroit sprinted to an early 13-4 lead. The cold streak extended through the nine-minute mark as Miami missed their first seven three-pointers. Michael Beasley finally nailed a corner three to end the mess in his first minute off the bench. After a "why not" 3-point attempt by the Birdman, Ray Allen was left all alone for a nearly uncontested corner three. The quarter closed with a 28-18 Pistons lead. Allen and Beasley led Miami with five points each.
Detroit's lead grew to 18 before Miami scored again, a straight up triple by Chalmers with nine minutes left in the half to cut it to 36-21. It was the start of a 12-4 mini-run for Miami which brought the HEAT back within 10 at 40-30. The deficit was cut to nine at one point before James threw an alley-oop to Beasley cutting toward the basket for a missed dunk - the first of two in a row for Beas. Meanwhile, the Pistons ran the lead back out to 13, at 47-34. The half closed with the Pistons holding a comfortable 54-43 lead. Despite their struggles, Miami made six of their last nine 3-pointers. LBJ Scored 14 points in the quarter to lead Miami. Andre Drummond scored six points with 11 rebounds in 11 minutes to pace the Pistons. Josh Smith scored 13 for Detroit.
Andre Drummond had to take a seat with a little more than a minute gone in the third when he drew his fourth personal foul. At the same time, Chris Bosh started to HEAT up, with Miami's first seven points in the quarter (a team best). It didn't really do Miami very much good, as Drummond's replacement, Kyle Singler, drained two three-pointers in a three minute span, bringing the lead back to 16 at 66-50 with 7:21 left in the third. I have to admit, it was at this point when I started to internally think that Miami was about to go on their nightly tear. With the score 74-58 with just over three minutes remaining, Norris Cole hit a three pointer from the right corner, followed by a Beasley dunk and a charging foul by Rodney Stuckey. The HEAT couldn't maintain the pace, and allowed the Pistons to stretch the lead back to 14 at the end of the quarter, 82-68.
Things were looking grim to start the fourth, as Jonas Jerebko nailed a three to make the lead 17. That was followed by a sick putback slam by the Birdman, a Norris Cole coast to coast layup, a Birdman block, a Pistons shot clock violation, another Cole layup, an unforced turnover by Brandon Jennings, and a third straight layup for Cole which made it 85-76. Beasley then made a driving layup with the harm. Beas missed the free throw, but the Birdman tipped it in for two. Beasley scored the next four on a layup and a pair of free throws. LBJ came on to cut the lead to three at 91-88 with a driving slam off a Josh Smith miss at the opposite end. Neither team scored for the next two minutes, as Miami's defense choked the Pistons into two shot-clock violations while Miami's offense couldn't find the net. Detroit broke the streak with a long Jennings three-pointer near the end of another shot clock. The Pistons were back in the driver's seat, and pushed the lead to 100-91 with two minutes left. Chris Bosh kept trying to sink a three, but couldn't connect as the Pistons successfully ran the clock down with little drama.
- Miami's lack of rebounding expertise was an easily visible weakpoint for the HEAT - and not just on the scoresheet, where they were outrebounded 46-to-34.
- James Jones, who started in place of the resting Dwyane Wade, was a complete non-factor. He went 0-for-4 from the field with one assist in 11 minutes.
- Shane Battier also couldn't buy a shot, going 0-for-4 from long distance and finishing with two points in 15 minutes.
- Chris Andersen was a mixed bag - with a rare sub-50% shooting percentage night (two-for-five) and eight timely points with four precious rebounds and a team best plus-4 rating.
- Norris Cole was a sparkplug. He moves from basket to basket faster than just about anybody.
- LBJ posted a below average (for him) statline of 23 points, six assists, five rebounds, and two steals. He also had a team high six turnovers.
- Not only did the HEAT fail to extend their winning streak past 10 games, they also failed to keep the opposing team under 100 points for the first time in nine contests.
- After scoring at least 100 points in 13 of their first 14 games of the season, Miami hasn't scored in triple digits in four straight games.
- Kyle Singler led seven Pistons in double figures, with 18 points.
- Andre Drummond fouled out in just 22 minutes, but collected 18 boards against the HEAT, the most by any player against them this season.
- Jorts played eight minutes in his return to Miami, blocking one shot and going scoreless.
Tune in next time as Miami tries to start another streak - on the road against the Chicago Bulls on Thursday night.