LOS ANGELES, Cal. - Jordan Hill had career highs of 24 points and 17 rebounds, and Jodie Meeks and Nick Young scored 19 points apiece in the Los Angeles Lakers' 114-99 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night.
Steve Blake had nine points and 16 assists for the Lakers, who made a late surge for just their second victory in six games. Los Angeles scored 16 consecutive points in a rally spanning the third and fourth quarters, holding Detroit without a field goal for more than five minutes.
Brandon Jennings scored 23 points and Andre Drummond had 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Pistons, who have lost five of six. Detroit has lost 38 of its last 40 road games against Western Conference teams.
Josh Smith scored 18 for the Pistons, who went 1-3 on their four-game West Coast road swing. Playing without injured guards Will Bynum and Chauncey Billups, Detroit got 16 points off the bench from Rodney Stuckey, but struggled offensively midway through the second half of an otherwise even game.
Hill extended his impressive start to the season with another productive effort down low. Five days after moving into the starting lineup and promptly hitting his career high with 21 points against New Orleans, Hill surpassed that mark and his previous best rebounding game with relentless work down low against the Pistons' imposing front line.
Greg Monroe had 17 points and seven rebounds for the Pistons. Jennings hit 3-pointers on four consecutive possessions in the final minutes after Detroit had fallen behind by 19, but it was too late.
Detroit led for most of an uneventful first half that was punctuated by Jennings' lob pass off the backboard to Drummond for a rim-shaking dunk late in the second quarter.
Los Angeles scored the final 10 points of the third quarter, taking a 79-71 lead into the fourth on a buzzer-beating turnaround jumper by Jordan Farmar. Strong playmaking by Blake and Farmar catalyzed the rally, which continued with the first six points of the fourth.
Detroit missed six field-goal attempts and three free throws during the Lakers' rally. Los Angeles stretched its lead to 106-87 on Meeks' 3-pointer with 3:26 to play, building a lead too large to be overcome by Jennings' late 3-point spree.
After playing 12 games in 20 days to open the regular season, the Lakers get the next four days off to recover. They'll probably practice with Kobe Bryant, who returned Saturday for his first workout with his teammates since tearing his Achilles tendon in April.
Bryant still hasn't given a timetable for his return to the court. Coach Mike D'Antoni again advised patience Sunday, saying the fourth-leading scorer in NBA history still will miss "a bunch" more games, likely not returning before Thanksgiving.
The Lakers also don't know when Steve Nash will return from nerve root irritation, although the two-time MVP point guard will be examined this week.
NOTES: Billups missed his second straight game with knee tendinitis. Bynum sat out with a strained hamstring. ... Both teams wore alternate jerseys, with the Lakers in their Sunday whites and the Pistons in their blue "Motor City" jerseys. ... Pistons owner Tom Gores watched the game from a seat next to the Detroit bench. Gores, a private equity investor, lives and works in Beverly Hills.
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