Pistons look to end drought at United Center

BY foxsports • December 18, 2015

The Chicago Bulls continue to take advantage of playing at home.

That's usually been the case when they face the Detroit Pistons.

The Bulls can continue that dominance of the Pistons at the United Center by completing a perfect five-game homestand Friday night (7:30 p.m. pregame, 8 p.m. tip-off on FOX Sports Detroit).

Chicago (15-8) has consistently shined while going 11-3 at home. No team has played away from home less than the Bulls, who have gone 4-5 on the road. In home games, the Bulls lead the NBA in defensive field-goal percentage (40.8) and rank second in points allowed at 93.8 per contest.

Since giving up an average of 103.3 points during a three-game slide, Chicago has yielded 88.8 per game through the first four of this homestand. The Bulls haven't won five straight anywhere since last December.

"(There's) a great vibe," guard Derrick Rose said after scoring 19 in Wednesday's 98-85 win over Memphis. "As long as we're winning games we don't care about anything else. Everything else gets swept under the rug. We're playing together, finishing games together.

"On to the next game."

They've beaten the Pistons in 17 of the last 18 regular-season meetings at the United Center, holding them to an average of 86.7 points. Detroit (15-12) reached 100 once during that stretch.

The Pistons, though, won the only meeting this season with a 98-94 overtime victory Oct. 30 in Detroit as they held Rose to eight points on 4-of-13 shooting with five turnovers. Jimmy Butler led the Bulls with 23 points and has totaled 47 in his last two contests.

The Pistons are 2-8 in road games since winning their first three. They hadn't surpassed 100 points during that stretch, averaging 89.6, before winning 107-95 at league-worst Philadelphia last Friday.

Beginning with that victory, Detroit has averaged 111.8 points and shot 46.6 percent to win three of four. However, the Pistons yielded their second-most points of the season while holding on for a 119-116 win over Boston on Wednesday to close a three-game homestand.

"There were a lot of good things from an offensive standpoint," coach Stan Van Gundy said. "We didn't play very good defense."

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored a career-high 31 on 10-of-16 shooting. The third-year guard averaged 12.7 points and shot 38.2 percent in the first 20 games, but he's at 18.3 points and 47.4 percent in the last seven.

"I never lost confidence in myself, because I know offense is one of those things that comes and goes," Caldwell-Pope said. "I just kept playing hard on defense and stuck to my routine. I knew I would start hitting shots at some point."

One of his worst games of the season came against Chicago, scoring six points on 2-of-12 shooting. Caldwell-Pope has averaged 7.6 points and shot 36.0 percent in eight career matchups.

Pistons leading scorer Reggie Jackson has averaged 24.8 points in the last four games. He's scored 22 in each of the last three against the Bulls while averaging 9.0 assists.

The NBA leader with 23 double-doubles, Andre Drummond recorded 20 points and 20 rebounds against the Bulls in October.



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