AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) — Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored a career-high 38 points, leading the Detroit Pistons to a 118-98 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday night.
Tobias Harris added 19 points and Andre Drummond 17 for the Pistons, who ended an eight-game losing streak to New Orleans. Detroit had lost three in a row overall.
New Orleans blew a nine-point lead in the third quarter and lost its third straight and fourth in five games. Anthony Davis, who scored a career-high 59 points last February at Detroit, had 31 points and 12 rebounds, while Jrue Holliday added 22 points and 11 assists.
The first quarter started the scoring duel between Davis and Caldwell-Pope. Caldwell-Pope had 17 points to Davis’ 16 as the Pistons built a 34-30 lead.
Davis kept going in the second quarter, but his 23 points in the half weren’t enough to keep the Pistons from taking a 60-54 lead. Detroit shot 57.8 percent, while the Pelicans were at 57.9 percent, but made five 3-pointers to one for New Orleans.
The Pelicans regained the lead midway through the third period, using a 12-0 run to go up 74-66. Solomon Hill provided the final six points with back-to-back 3-pointers.
Detroit’s reserves got the Pistons back into the game, and Caldwell-Pope’s buzzer-beating 3-pointer gave them an 83-81 lead at quarter’s end.
Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy stayed with his backups at the start of the fourth, only keeping one starter on the floor, and they built a 98-87 lead with 7:32 to play.
Pelicans: Davis’ 59-point game last February also set The Palace single-game scoring record – a mark likely to survive the last months of the arena’s history. He has scored at least 30 points in his last three games against Detroit.
Pistons: Caldwell-Pope’s 17 first-quarter points were the most in a quarter by a Pistons player this season. … Detroit’s last win over New Orleans came on Feb. 4, 2012. No one in Wednesday’s game played in that one.
PISTONS GET RARE WIN OVER OLD BOSS
Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry, who coached Detroit from 1998-2000, lost to the Pistons for only the fifth time in 17 career games.
Pelicans: Visit the Washington Wizards on Saturday.
Pistons: Host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday.