Pistons fall flat in third quarter again, suffer 25-point loss to Hawks

Detroit News

The Pistons had yet to beat the Atlanta Hawks after failing to do so in back-to-back games at Little Caesars Arena in October.

That trend continued as Detroit fell in a 130-105 loss to the Hawks on Friday at State Farm Arena. It marked the fifth straight loss for the Pistons (8-27), their third five-game skid of the season. The loss also marked the Pistons’ third consecutive loss by at least 15 points.

The Pistons started the game well from 3-point range with four of their first six triples going down. Isaiah Stewart, who failed to make his last six triples entering Friday night, knocked down two 3-pointers in the first quarter. The team was well balanced in scoring to start, but Bojan Bogdanovic and Killian Hayes picked up two fouls apiece and spent the rest of the period on the bench.

Detroit closed the first half on a 13-6 run to take a 63-60 lead into the half. Looking to eradicate their recent stretch of dismal third quarters, Bogdanovic nailed a triple coming out of the break. However, the Hawks scored 13 consecutive points, part of a 15-3 run to take a 75-66 lead early in the third quarter. Detroit gave up 35 points in the the third quarter to the Hawks.

Trae Young, who maintained a healthy offensive rhythm for the majority of the game, scored 15 of his game-high 26 points in the third quarter. He didn’t have the explosions of 35 points on Oct. 26 against the Pistons and 36 on Oct. 28, but he commanded the game with his facilitating, picking up 13 assists. His backcourt-mate Dejounte Murray added 26 points, five assists and four steals.

Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic, who played on the same EuroLeague team as Bojan Bogdanovic, finished with 19 points.

More:BOX SCORE: Hawks 130, Pistons 105

The Hawks began the fourth quarter on a 15-2 run to effectively put an end to the Pistons’ chances of making any late-game comeback. The Pistons went on a severe offensive drought late in the game, going without a field goal from four minutes left in the third quarter to the 8:10 mark of the fourth quarter after Marvin Bagley III scored an easy layup.

Bojan Bogdanovic scored a team-high 23 points for the Pistons and Killian Hayes had 17 points, five rebounds and five assists. Jaden Ivey added 15 points and four assists and spent most of the game with foul trouble. He finished with five fouls. Jalen Duren had 13 points and eight rebounds.

The Pistons committed a season-high 22 turnovers in Wednesday’s loss to the Philadelphia 76ers. That improved on Friday as Detroit had 14 turnovers, but Atlanta took care of the ball and only committed eight.

More:Pistons, general manager Troy Weaver agree to contract extension

Atlanta dominated the interior by scoring 66 points in the paint. Oneyka Okongwu added 12 points and nine rebounds off the Hawks bench. Clint Capela tallied a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds. Detroit scored just 40 points in the paint.

The Hawks also scored the ball in transition, picking up 21 fast break points versus the Pistons’ four.

Detroit’s bench, which normally scores nearly 37 points per game was outscored by Atlanta, 51-30.

The Pistons will look to snap their third-longest losing streak of the season after Christmas when the L.A. Clippers visit Little Caesars Arena on Monday.

mcurtis@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @MikeACurtis2

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