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Pistons Have A Ball Against The Bullets
19 February 1997. Detroit Pistons 100, Washington Bullets 85 (record: 24-28)
Game leaders: Howard (25 points), Howard (10 rebounds), Strickland (14 assists)
This game really wasn't as close as the final score indicated. The Bullets had beaten the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday, and they were looking to add some legitimacy to their new regime by playing tight against a playoff-caliber team on the road. Uh, no dice here.
Detroit's Grant Hill was his usual spectacular self, generating 24 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, and 2 steals. He had a drive around Juwan Howard for a dunk (and foul) that was highlight material.
It wasn't like the Bullets didn't try. They were down 26-25 after 1 quarter, but were limited by the Pistons' defense to 13 points in the second. The Pistons built up their lead as high as 23 points before the Bullets closed the gap for the final score.
After the game, the Bullets, in particular Rod Strickland, were complaining in a veiled manner about the officiating. Rod Strickland was whistled for an offensive foul (his 6th) later in the game and he blew up. He was called for a technical on his inital blow-up, and after walking to the bench threw a towel on the court and was T-ed up for his second technical and was automatically ejected.
After the game, coach Bernie Bickerstaff made the observation that the Pistons, a predominantly perimeter-shooting team, went to the foul line 34 times, while the Bullets only went 7 times. Some of that can be associated with the lackadasical play of the Bullets in the game, but recently they've been getting the bum steer from officials.
Time to stop the double-standard. Call the fouls evenly.
wtf 24 February 1997
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