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News » Hamilton delivers at end

Hamilton delivers at end

Hamilton delivers at end
WASHINGTON -- Detroit Pistons guard Richard Hamilton's return to action could not have come a moment too soon.

The 6-foot-7 guard delivered when the Pistons needed him most, as they held off a late surge by the Washington Wizards -- and spoiled the season debut of Gilbert Arenas -- for a 98-96 win.

Detroit (35-37) snapped a three-game losing streak while preventing the Wizards (17-57) from winning back-to-back games for the first time this month.

Hamilton, who had missed six games with a left groin injury, led all scorers with 31 points. More importantly, Hamilton scored six of Detroit's last eight points.

Hamilton made a 3-pointer that gave Detroit a 94-89 lead moments after missing a free throw.

"(Former St. John's Basketball coach) Lou Carnesecca always told me, 'Regardless if you miss a shot. You put it in the trash bag and put it to the side,' " Hamilton said, "because the next shot you take, you have to feel you're going to make it.

Arena finished with 15 points for Washington.

While there were several Pistons who played a major role in the team's victory, none stood out as much as Hamilton.

"It was great to get Rip back," center Kwame Brown said. "That made it easier for a lot of people. It's good to have our shooter back."

And shooting is exactly what Hamilton was about on Saturday, taking a season-high 31 shots from the field.

"Rip is aggressive," said Pistons coach Michael Curry. "We run a lot of things through him."

The play of Hamilton and company was instrumental in Detroit building a comfortable 84-72 lead going into the fourth quarter.

But Washington went on a 15-2 run to take an 87-86 lead. The Pistons responded with back-to-back jumpers from Antonio McDyess, and never trailed again.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: April 2, 2009


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