Dinwiddie's 3-point dagger helps Nets sink Pistons in OT
New York — Spencer Dinwiddie has no love lost for the Pistons. Almost every time he faces his former team, he has a standout game.
Add another to the list.
Dinwiddie hit a tying 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation and added the go-ahead 3-pointer with 7.1 seconds remaining in overtime, lifting the Nets to a thrilling 120-119 victory over the Pistons on Wednesday night at Barclays Center.
On the final possession, Blake Griffin missed a fadeaway jumper and the Pistons were left with their third straight loss.
It’s the Pistons’ fifth game this season decided by three points or fewer; they won the first three and have lost the last two, on back-to-back nights.
“You live by the sword and you die by the sword. The first few games were close and we were winning them — and now we’re losing them,” coach Dwane Casey said. “It’s on ourselves, myself — everybody in the locker room.”
It’s the third straight loss for the Pistons, who had dropped two straight to the Celtics.
Andre Drummond had his third 20-20 game this season — and second against the Nets — with 24 points and 23 rebounds and Griffin added 25 points, nine rebounds and four assists.
Reggie Jackson finished with 21 points and Stanley Johnson six points and a career-best 12 rebounds.
There appeared to be a miscommunication about a switch and Andre Drummond ended up guarding Dinwiddie, who hit a game-winner over Drummond in a game at Little Caesars Arena in January.
This time, it was a long 3-pointer that Drummond allowed.
“That switch on to Spencer, I feel like I should have gotten up a little more on him,” Drummond said. “I made him feel comfortable and he got into a rhythm and took a step back and shot the 3 and made it.”
And Dinwiddie delivered — again.
“When I shot the shot, I didn’t think nothing else except, ‘I’m going to make it,’” said Dinwiddie, who finished with 25 points in 32 minutes.
Griffin finished with 25 points and nine rebounds and Drummond had his third 20-20 game this season — and second against the Nets — with 24 points and 23 rebounds. Reggie Jackson finished with 21 points and Stanley Johnson six points and a career-best 12 rebounds.
The Pistons (4-3) couldn’t overcome their small mistakes and as they did in Tuesday’s loss at Boston, they paid the price.
“Little mistakes down the stretch — mostly defensive,” Griffin said. “On those little things, they come back to bite you and each game was decided by such a small margin — we’ve got to be better.”
Griffin scored the Pistons’ last seven points, including a drive with 53.6 seconds left in for a 119-117 lead, and took a charge on Dinwiddie. The Pistons couldn’t capitalize, setting the stage for Dinwiddie’s go-ahead corner 3-pointer.
The Pistons fell behind by 12 in the first quarter in the season opener against the Nets (3-5) and this time, trailed by 15 with three minutes to go in the opening period. They erased the deficit in the second quarter, with a 21-2 spurt.
In the fourth quarter, the Pistons led, 100-94, with 4:40 left, but Jarrett Allen (14 points and nine rebounds) split a pair of free throws and had a dunk on the next possession. Griffin answered with a 3-pointer to push the lead back to seven, but Dinwiddie was fouled after making a 3-pointer. He hit the free throw for the four-point play and the lead was down to 103-100.
Allen made one of two free throws and Drummond added a tip-in. Dinwiddie responded with another 3-pointer and Allen followed with a three-point play to push the Nets into a 107-105 lead.
Griffin answered the bell again, hitting a long 3-pointer to push the Pistons back ahead by one with 1:19 left in regulation. Jackson added a pair of free throws with 22.6 seconds remaining, for a 110-107 cushion.
Dinwiddie answered with a deep 3-pointer with 20 seconds remaining, for the tying basket, sending the game to overtime.
Joe Harris scored 23 points and Caris LeVert 19 points, six rebounds and six assists for the Nets.
Here are some other observations from Wednesday’s win over the Nets:
■ Reggie Bullock sustained a left-ankle sprain in the first quarter and was limited the rest of the first half after going to the locker room to be examined. He returned to play in the game for a short stint but finished scoreless in nine minutes.
Casey didn’t have an update on Bullock’s status, but the Pistons don’t play again until Saturday in Philadelphia. Without Bullock, the Pistons went to some smaller lineups, with Ish Smith and Jose Calderon together, along with shooters around them.
The Pistons already are without Luke Kennard (shoulder sprain) and without their two best 3-point shooters, struggled again to hit from the outside. Casey has shown a preference to play smaller at times, but the injuries are forcing his hand.
■ With Bullock unavailable, Casey opted to go to Bruce Brown again — and the rookie showed up, with nine points in 29 minutes. He was 3-of-9 from the field but was active around the rim and got to the free-throw line. When Brown had a good look at a corner 3-pointer, he knocked it down, for his first career 3-pointer. Brown, a second-round pick, has not only worked his way into the rotation, but is playing valuable minutes, including starting the second half after Bullock didn’t return.
■ The Pistons’ second unit has struggled shooting the ball, but they were the needed spark in the 21-2 run that helped close the deficit. Zaza Pachulia and Glenn Robinson III (nine points each) led the charge and Jose Calderon added eight points, taking up some of the scoring slack with Bullock being out.
■ Drummond passed Dennis Rodman for fourth all-time in rebounds in franchise history. He was a menace on the boards again, but they couldn’t capitalize, going even with the Nets in rebounding, 55-5.