DETROIT (AP) — Kenyan Martin Jr. had a four-point possession with 31 seconds remaining to help the Houston Rockets beat the Detroit Pistons 117-114 on Saturday night in a matchup of the NBA’s worst teams.
Eric Gordon led the Rockets (12-38) with 24 points. Martin had 15 points and 13 rebounds, and Tari Easton added 16 points and 10 rebounds.
Alec Burke had 21 points for the Pistons (13-38). He has lost five out of six.
With the Pistons leading 112–109, Martin was fouled as his layup bounced twice off the rim before falling in. He missed the free throw, but J’Sean Tate kept the ball and Martin’s putback gave the Rockets a 113–112 lead.
Jabari Smith Jr. then tied up Burke and the Rockets won the jump ball.
Gordon hit two free throws to make it 115–112, but Jalen Ivey’s layup made it a one-score game with 10 seconds left.
Gordon added two more free throws to make it 117–114, and Ivey’s 3-point attempt was off the rim.
Rockets: Center Alperen Saenggun missed the game due to a non-COVID illness. … The Rockets have won three straight in Detroit, but are still just 21-49 in the Motor City. However, they are 49–22 against the Pistons at home.
Pistons: Detroit was trying to win two straight games for only the second time this season. They defeated the Denver Nuggets and Utah Jazz on November 22–23.
Rockets: Host Oklahoma City on Wednesday night.
Pistons: Monday night in Dallas.