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'Rhythm' in Wizards' NBA win over Pistons

Associated Press logo Associated Press 17/12/2016

A month removed from a dreadful start to the season, the Washington Wizards just might be coming together under coach Scott Brooks.

It continued on Friday night (Saturday AEDT), as John Wall had 29 points and 11 assists while guiding a Wizards offence that committed a season-low five turnovers in a 122-108 victory over the Detroit Pistons.

Bradley Beal added 25 points and Marcin Gortat had 12 to go with 14 rebounds, helping Washington score its most points of the season while winning for the fourth time in five games.

"I think we're getting into a nice little rhythm that we're understanding what we want to do as a basketball team on both ends," said Brooks, who replaced Randy Wittman after last season.

"We're still not where we want to be. But I see some progress, I see some belief in each other, and that's what it's all about."

After losing eight of 10 to start the season, the Wizards have gone 9-6 since to move within three games of .500 (11-14).

"We're competing. We're into guys. We're making guys uncomfortable," Wall said.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 24 points to lead the Pistons, and Andre Drummond added 13 points and 12 rebounds.

In other games on Friday, the Los Angeles Lakers took advantage of a timely game against the lowly Philadelphia 76ers, snapping an eight-game losing streak with a 100-89 victory.

Julius Randle scored nine of his 25 points in a dominating first quarter, while Lou Williams added 18 points and D'Angelo Russell and Nick Young had 15 points apiece.

The Houston Rockets made an NBA-record 24 three-pointers, led by Eric Gordon's seven-for-12 effort, and beat the New Orleans Pelicans 122-100.

Orlando defeated Brooklyn 118-111 to snap a six-game losing streak with Nikola Vucevic scoring 21 points and picking up 10 rebounds.

Dwight Howard had 27 points and 15 rebounds for his 17th double-double of the season to lead the Atlanta Hawks to a 125-121 victory over the Toronto Raptors.

The Sacramento Kings weathered a late Memphis rally for a 96-92 victory over the Grizzlies, with DeMarcus Cousins scoring 22 points, Kosta Koufos had 16 points and 13 rebounds.

The Los Angeles Clippers held on to beat the Miami Heat 102-98 for their fourth consecutive win, with Blake Griffin scoring 20 points, and Chris Paul and JJ Redick each adding 17.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 22 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds in the Milwaukee Bucks' 95-69 rout of the Chicago Bulls for a sweep of their home-and-home series.

Isaiah Thomas scored 16 of his 26 points in the second half and Al Horford had 18 points and five blocked shots as the Boston Celtics beat the Charlotte Hornets 96-88 to stop a three-game slide.

Rodney Hood pulled up for a three-pointer in transition with 0.8 seconds left that gave the Utah Jazz a 103-100 win over the Dallas Mavericks.

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