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This has been a decidedly poor season for the Detroit Pistons. Now, the mounting losses have taken a backseat to Rodney Stuckey's health.

With their thoughts assuredly focused on their teammate's condition, the Pistons come off a deflating stretch of road games to face the Houston Rockets on Sunday night.

In line to miss the playoffs for the first time in nine years, Detroit's season suddenly became much more somber when Stuckey collapsed into the arms of strength and conditioning coach Arnie Kander on Friday night during the third quarter of a 99-92 loss to Cleveland.

The third-year guard was "doing well" and was released from the hospital Saturday afternoon. His tests at the Cleveland Clinic came back normal, the team said, and he's returning to Detroit to undergo further testing.

Stuckey was breathing on his own as he was taken to the hospital after collapsing. In 2008, he missed two games after feeling dizzy and lightheaded during a game.

"It's not pleasant to talk about," coach John Kuester said. "All that matters is he's going to be OK."

There is no timetable for Stuckey's return and there won't be until the additional testing is finished. Stuckey is having a career season, averaging 17.1 points and 5.0 assists.

Will Bynum may take Stuckey's place versus the Rockets (31-30), or Ben Gordon could move into the starting lineup for the Pistons (21-41) while more of the offense gets run through forward Tayshaun Prince.

Detroit is also expected to be without Ben Wallace, who has missed consecutive games with a knee injury. Wallace is averaging a team-high 9.1 rebounds.

With the veteran big man out, Jonas Jerebko and Jason Maxiell have been relied on more for their rebounding. They combined for 20 of the Pistons' 36 boards versus the Cavaliers.

It was the sixth straight loss - five of which were on the road - for Detroit, which is tied with New York for the Eastern Conference's third-worst record.

Houston is in a tie with Memphis for ninth place in the West, 4 1/2 games behind eighth-place Portland.

"We're right there in the playoff race," Rockets forward Luis Scola said. "From now on, every one of them is important."

The Rockets picked up a much-needed win Saturday night, beating Minnesota 112-98. They had lost five of their first seven since acquiring Kevin Martin in a trade with Sacramento.

Martin is coming off a strong performance, posting 30 points, six rebounds and five assists. He has scored 30 points or more in three of his last five games.

Scola has had two straight dominant games. He had 25 points and a career-high 21 rebounds against the Timberwolves three days after a 19-point, 18-rebound effort in an 84-81 loss to the Kings.

Scola is averaging 19.3 points and shooting 61.0 percent in his last three games against the Pistons.

Scola has more than made up for the absence of forward Trevor Ariza, who has missed five straight games with a hip injury. Ariza's status is uncertain.

Houston beat Detroit 107-96 on Dec. 15, getting 23 points from Scola. The Rockets have won three straight and five of their last six against the Pistons.

Tagged: Cavaliers, Pistons, Rockets, Ben Wallace, Ben Gordon, Kevin Martin, Trevor Ariza, Rodney Stuckey, Luis Scola

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