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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- WASHINGTON 26 25 24 22 97 DETROIT 19 24 20 20 83 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: WAS - MITCH RICHMOND 33, JUWAN HOWARD 16, TRACY MURRAY 12 DET - GRANT HILL 25, JERRY STACKHOUSE 20, CHRISTIAN LAETTNER 12

HIGH REBOUND: WAS - MICHAEL SMITH 13, JAHIDI WHITE 10 DET - JEROME WILLIAMS 11, GRANT HILL 8

HIGH ASSISTS: WAS - CHRIS WHITNEY 8, ROD STRICKLAND 5 DET - TERRY MILLS 4, TWO PLAYERS WITH 3

ATT: 14,181


Extended Box

WASHINGTON (97) AT DETROIT (83)

WASHINGTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

HOWARD F 33 8-20 0-0 2 3 5 1 4 0 2 16 SMITH F 39 3-7 0-0 5 8 13 3 4 1 1 6 J WHITE C 15 2-4 0-0 2 8 10 0 2 0 2 4 RICHMOND G 41 13-24 5-5 0 5 5 0 4 4 0 33 STRICKLAND G 18 3-6 1-2 0 0 0 5 4 2 2 7 AUSTIN 18 2-4 3-4 1 3 4 1 2 0 1 7 C WHITNEY 27 2-7 4-4 1 3 4 8 1 2 3 8 A WILLIAMS 15 1-3 0-0 1 2 3 1 4 0 0 2 T MURRAY 21 5-9 2-2 1 0 1 0 4 1 2 12 JORDAN 7 0-5 0-0 3 1 4 1 2 0 0 0 KING 3 1-1 0-0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 2 PROFIT 3 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0

TOTALS 240 40-91 15-17 16 34 50 21 32 10 13 97 (.440) (.882) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 13(18 PTS)

DETROIT REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

HILL F 38 9-22 7-9 1 7 8 2 1 1 1 25 LAETTNER F 31 3-10 6-8 1 5 6 0 3 0 3 12 MILLS C 26 2-9 0-0 2 5 7 4 2 2 1 5 HUNTER G 41 3-11 4-5 1 3 4 3 4 1 2 10 STACKHOUSE G 38 6-14 8-9 0 2 2 3 4 0 6 20 CURRY 22 3-5 2-4 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 8 WILLIAMS 34 1-3 1-4 6 5 11 1 2 0 3 3 REID 5 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 CROTTY 5 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 BUECHLER DNP - COACH'S DECISION MONTROSS DNP - COACH'S DECISION VAUGHT DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 27-75 28-39 11 28 39 13 18 4 16 83 (.360) (.718) TEAM REBS: 15 TOTAL TO: 16(20 PTS)

WASHINGTON 26 25 24 22 - 97 DETROIT 19 24 20 20 - 83

BLOCKED SHOTS: WASHINGTON - A WILLIAMS 2, AUSTIN, T MURRAY, RICHMOND. DETROIT - STACKHOUSE, HILL, WILLIAMS, REID. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: WASHINGTON 2-10 (.200), RICHMOND 2-5, C WHITNEY 0-1, T MURRAY 0-3, PROFIT 0-1. DETROIT 1-12 (.083), HILL 0-1, MILLS 1-4, HUNTER 0-6, STACKHOUSE 0-1. TECHNICALS: WASHINGTON - STRICKLAND 2 (EJECTED), DETROIT - HEAD COACH GENTRY 2 (EJECTED). OFFICIALS: JACK NIES, MONTY MCCUTCHEN, MATT BOLAND. A - 14,181. T - 2:14.


Box Score

WASHINGTON (97) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Howard 33 8-20 0-0 2-5 1 4 16 Smith 39 3-7 0-0 5-13 3 4 6 J White 15 2-4 0-0 2-10 0 2 4 Richmond 41 13-24 5-5 0-5 0 4 33 Strickland 18 3-6 1-2 0-0 5 4 7 Austin 18 2-4 3-4 1-4 1 2 7 C Whitney 27 2-7 4-4 1-4 8 1 8 A Williams 15 1-3 0-0 1-3 1 4 2 T Murray 21 5-9 2-2 1-1 0 4 12 Jordan 7 0-5 0-0 3-4 1 2 0 King 3 1-1 0-0 0-1 0 1 2 Profit 3 0-1 0-0 0-0 1 0 0 _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 40-91 15-17 16-50 21 32 97 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.440, FT-.882. 3-Point Goals: 2-10, .200 (Richmond 2-5, C Whitney 0-1, T Murray 0-3, Profit 0-1). Team rebounds: 8. Blocked shots: 5 (A Williams 2, Austin, T Murray, Richmond). Turnovers: 13 (C Whitney 3, Howard 2, J White 2, Strickland 2, T Murray 2, Austin, Smith). Steals: 10 (Richmond 4, C Whitney 2, Strickland 2, Smith, T Murray).

DETROIT (83) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Hill 38 9-22 7-9 1-8 2 1 25 Laettner 31 3-10 6-8 1-6 0 3 12 Mills 26 2-9 0-0 2-7 4 2 5 Hunter 41 3-11 4-5 1-4 3 4 10 Stackhouse 38 6-14 8-9 0-2 3 4 20 Curry 22 3-5 2-4 0-1 0 1 8 Williams 34 1-3 1-4 6-11 1 2 3 Reid 5 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 1 0 Crotty 5 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 Buechler DNP - coach's decision Montross DNP - coach's decision Vaught DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 27-75 28-39 11-39 13 18 83 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.360, FT-.718. 3-Point Goals: 1-12, .083 (Hill 0-1, Mills 1-4, Hunter 0-6, Stackhouse 0-1). Team rebounds: 15. Blocked shots: 4 (Stackhouse, Hill, Williams, Reid). Turnovers: 16 (Stackhouse 6, Laettner 3, Williams 3, Hunter 2, Hill, Mills). Steals: 4 (Mills 2, Hill, Hunter). ____________________________________________ Washington 26 25 24 22 - 97 Detroit 19 24 20 20 - 83 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Washington 2 (Strickland 2 (ejected), 10:57 3rd, 10:36 3rd). Detroit 2 (Head Coach Gentry 2 (ejected), 8:38 2nd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 14,181. T: 2:14. Officials: Jack Nies, Monty Mccutchen, Matt Boland.


Game Story

AUBURN HILLS, Michigan (Ticker) -- Mitch Richmond scored a season-high 33 points in a spectacular all-around effort to lead the Washington Wizards to their season-high third straight victory, a 97-83 triumph over the Detroit Pistons.

Richmond surpassed his previous high of 31 points in a win at San Antonio on December 11. He shot 13-of-24 from the field, made all five of his free throws, collected four steals and seemed to come up with every big shot down the stretch after staking the Wizards to a comfortable halftime lead.

Juwan Howard scored 16 points and Tracy Murray added 12 off the bench for Washington, which had not won three straight since February 19-21 of the lockout-shortened season.

"It's the first (three-game win streak) since last February and it feels good," Richmond said. "Now we have one more before Christmas and we have to do what we did tonight, especially on the defensive end."

Grant Hill scored 25 points and Jerry Stackhouse added 20 for the Pistons, who suffered their fourth loss in six games and looked like they left their game in Philadelphia.

"It seemed like we were flat on both ends," Hill said. "When we'd get close, they kept their poise and got a big rebound or a big shot. It was like we left it all in Philly."

Detroit did not seem to have recovered from Monday's overtime loss to the 76ers appeared tired down the stretch, going the final 4:50 without a basket.

"We didn't play very well," Detroit coach Alvin Gentry said. "We didn't make plays and we gave up way too many offensive rebounds (16). We played a tough game yesterday and we just didn't have much energy today. Every team loses tough games, you can't let it bother you, especially when you're coming home."

"We tried to make them play outside," Washington coach Gar Heard added. "We felt if they were taking jump shots, we had a chance to win the game as long as we got the rebounds. They're a very good transition team."

The Wizards lost starter Rod Strickland with 10:36 remaining in the third quarter after the point guard received his second technical foul for arguing with official Jack Nies.

Chris Whitney came off the bench and did a solid job running the offense, collecting eight points and eight assists with three turnovers in 27 minutes.

"We told Chris that he probably would have to play the rest of the game," Heard said. "He was really solid down the stretch. He made a big basket late and got us into our offense. He did a good job."

"(Whitney) was awesome," Richmond added. "He came in and controlled the game. We didn't want to get into the running game with this team and shoot the quick shots. He did a solid, solid job."

Jahidi White grabbed 10 rebounds for the Wizards, who held a 50-39 advantage on the boards and shot 44 percent (40-of-91).

Christian Laettner scored 12 points and Lindsey Hunter added 10 for Detroit, which shot just 37 percent (27-of-75) yielded 20 points off turnovers.

"This game is a lot like our season has been," Hill said. "We'd make a couple of plays, think we were back in it and then slip back again. It's like getting to .500 and then slipping back again. We just have to get over that hump."

Richmond had 16 first-half points, giving Washington a 51-43 cushion at intermission. But the Pistons climbed back into contention in the third period.

Laettner made a pair of free throws with 7:02 remaining, shaving the deficit to 57-53. Richmond answered with a pair of free throws to spark a 9-2 run and capped it on a 3-pointer with 4:36 left that made it 66-55.

The Wizards closed the period with a 16-8 run and held a 75-63 lead entering the fourth quarter.

Laettner's hook with 4:53 to play pulled Detroit within 85-80 but Detroit could not buy a basket thereafter, missing their last seven shots.

Howard made a follow shot and a layup and Richmond followed with an acrobatic jumper from right sideline and two free throws to give Washington a 93-81 cushion with 1:31 left.

"It's good to have Richmond, because when we need a basket, he comes through for us," Heard said. "And I've always thought that he was one of the top defensive 2-guards in the league. He's solid and strong. Guys can't post him up and he's quick enough to guard them outside."

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