Pistons fall to 76ers in season finale, tied for best odds of landing No. 1 pick

Detroit News

Philadelphia — In the last game of the season, the Pistons weren’t just going to roll over and take a loss.

Though there were implications for their draft position, the Pistons played a tough game down to the wire against the Philadelphia 76ers before falling, 118-106, on Sunday night at Wells Fargo Center in the season finale.

With the loss, the Pistons (23-59) guaranteed themselves the third-worst record in the league, and as a result, they’ll be tied for the best odds (14%) of landing the No. 1 pick in the draft. The lowest they can fall is to the seventh spot.

The draft lottery on May 17 will determine their final position.

BOX SCORE: 76ers 118, Pistons 106

Luka Garza had 20 points, 10 rebounds and four assists, Isaiah Livers 14 points and Braxton Key 12 points and five rebounds for the Pistons, who lost six of their last nine games to finish the season.

Beard: A heartfelt thank you as my time on the Pistons beat nears the end

The 76ers (51-31) finished the season at 51-31 and they’ll be the No. 4 seed in the Eastern Conference, hosting the Toronto Raptors in a first-round playoff series.

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The Pistons stayed within single digits early in the fourth quarter, getting to 98-97 with 8:48 remaining after a putback by Garza and a 3-pointer by Jamorko Pickett. The 76ers put the game away with a decisive 12-0 run — with 10 straight points by Paul Reed (25 points and six rebounds) — during that stretch, including a pair of dunks. That pushed the lead to 112-98, and they cruised the rest of the way.

Rod.Beard@detroitnews.com

Twitter.com: @detnewsRodBeard

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