Portland, Ore. — For Andre Drummond, it was just another night at the office.
Another night with a double-double — and in the case of Sunday night's 120-103 win over the Portland Trail Blazers, an almost-absurd 29 points and 27 rebounds. It's becoming common for the fourth-year center, who boosted his jaw-dropping averages to 20.3 points and 20.3 rebounds through the first six games.
He joined Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlain as the only players with three games 20-20 games in the first six games of a season.
On the offensive end, he displayed a fluid jump-hook and was a menace on the offensive glass, with nine, fueling the Pistons' double-digit comeback, for their second win on the six-game West Coast trip.
"Andre's numbers are phenomenal. I just told somebody if he didn't get a rebound the rest of the trip, he'd be in the top three or four in the league in rebounding — he'd be averaging over 12 a game," coach Stan Van Gundy said. "What he's doing on the boards is phenomenal; he was just swallowing the ball down the stretch. It was an incredible turnaround."
But even as Drummond started to get more comfortable — hitting 14-of-19 from the field, Reggie Jackson started to break out, scoring 26 of his 40 points in the final period. Van Gundy said he wanted to get the ball to Drummond more, but with Jackson on a roll, there wasn't a need.
Rod Beard recaps Pistons' dramatic comeback 120-103 win over Blazers
All season, Drummond has focused on team success rather than individual stats, but with his All-Star-caliber numbers, it's hard to ignore.
"Whatever night we win is a great win," he said. "Individually, I'm just doing my part to help my team win, no matter what the numbers are — 5 rebounds or 20 rebounds. As long as we win the game, it was a good night for me."
With his third game of 25 points and 25 rebounds, Drummond leads all active players, surpassing Dwight Howard and Al Jefferson, who have two apiece.
But his defense in the fourth quarter is what aided the comeback, guarding the pick-and-roll perfectly and helping shut down the Blazers offense, which had dominated the first three quarters.
"It was a good night offensively for me but defensively, I grew a little bit tonight," said Drummond, who had 10 rebounds, two steals and a block in the final period. "I didn't challenge a lot of shots in that first half but in the fourth quarter, I did a good job coming over and getting stops.
"Everybody knows me as an energy guy so when I do certain things like that, it gets everybody excited and fired up."
Brandon Jennings returned to the team after missing Friday to be home for the birth of his third child. As he continues to rehab from his Achilles injury he suffered in January, Van Gundy reiterated that he was on schedule to return to game shape in mid- to late-December.
Jennings will take part in full-contact drills this week and continue to work in practice.
"It's going to take time; it's all a progression," Van Gundy said. "We're still a ways off — we're not going to see him (playing) this month."