Jackson helps surging Pistons power past Lakers

Detroit - The run is coming, just maybe a little too late to make a difference in the Pistons’ sputtering push toward a playoff run in the final weeks of the season.They got hot toward the end of the long western trip and picked up another win on Saturday against the struggling Chicago Bulls.They added one Monday.The Pistons had a surge at the end of the third quarter and played well down the stretch in the fourth, pulling away from the Los Angeles Lakers and taking a 112-106 victory at Little Caesars Arena.BOX SCORE: Pistons 112, L.A. Lakers 106The win pulls the Pistons (34-40) within five games of the Miami Heat for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, with eight games to go.Reggie Jackson had 20 points – his best game since returning from his ankle injury – Reggie Bullock had 16 points, and Andre Drummond 15 points and 18 rebounds for the Pistons, who have won four of their last five games and only play three teams with winning records in the remaining eight.Jackson had seven points and two assists in the fourth quarter and looked to be getting closer to his familiar role as a closer. But in only his fourth game back, he’s still got more to do.”He finished the game, so it was a step forward, but a few too many minutes, quite honestly,” Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said. “We probably should have him down more to 24 or 25 minutes.”Jackson had been playing the beginnings of quarters only, but played the last eight minutes of the fourth and showed some flashes.”He just looked comfortable; he’s starting to get his wind back,” forward Blake Griffin said. “There’s literally no substitute for basketball conditioning and basketball shape, so just playing the game and practicing has helped him a lot.”He looks very in control – and that’s a good sign.”The Pistons finished the third quarter with a 7-0 run in the last 1:12, with a jumper from Ish Smith (12 points), a lay-In by James Ennis III and a 3-pointer by Anthony Tolliver (15 points), for an 81-76 advantage heading to the fourth.Tolliver hit another 3-pointer and Ennis added a 3-pointer in the first 70 seconds of the fourth, getting the Pistons out to a 6-2 start and an 87-78 margin.The Lakers had back-to-back three-point plays by Brook Lopez (14 points and nine assists) and Julius Randle (23 points and 11 rebounds) to pull within 93-90, but Griffin (15 points) and Tolliver responded with back-to-back dunks to push the margin back to seven.The Pistons put the game away with consecutive 3-pointers by Griffin and Jackson, for their largest lead, 105-93, at the 2:56 mark. The Lakers (32-41) didn’t go away quietly.Lonzo Ball (15 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists) hit a 3-pointer and Randle hit two free throws to get within seven and Lakers coach Luke Walton tried an old bit to try to get closer: fouling Drummond intentionally.

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Tennessee Mourns Loss Of An Icon

Tennessee Mourns Loss Of An Icon

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Pat Summitt, legendary Lady Vol basketball coach, mentor and mother-figure to her players; a revered ambassador for her university and state; a trailblazer for women; and a role model for people all over the world passed away Tuesday, June 28, in Knoxville at the age of 64. Born Patricia Sue Head on June…