DETROIT– Jerami Grant’s driving layup on the final play came too late, and the Houston Firecrackers hung on for a 103-102 success over the Detroit Pistons on Friday night.

Down one with 3.4 seconds staying, the Pistons inbounded to Grant, who faked a handoff to Blake Griffin and then drove down the best side of the lane. Time plainly ran out prior to he laid the ball in, but he was likewise bumped by Houston’s P.J. Tucker.

Replays showed that contact also came after time ended, and after an evaluation, the game ended with the Firecrackers holding on.

Grant scored 21 points for Detroit, which rallied from a 20-point second-quarter deficit and almost erased a four-point space late in the fourth. Griffin’s 3-pointer with 29.9 seconds staying made it 103-102, and the Pistons stopped Houston at the other end to set up Grant’s last bid.

Eric Gordon scored 20 points for Houston, which snapped a three-game losing streak. The Rockets lacked John Wall and Christian Wood.

It was an ugly first quarter for the Pistons, who turned the ball over 9 times and tracked 34-21 at the end of the period. David Nwaba’s layup put Houston up 43-23 in the second.

The Pistons, however, have actually been a bit more competitive this season than their league-worst 3-12 record suggests. They chipped away at the deficit and tracked 55-47 at halftime despite the reality that Griffin had not scored yet.

Grant’s 3-pointer put the Pistons ahead in the 3rd, and they finished the quarter leading 81-77.

TIP-INS

Rockets: Wood, who went from Detroit to Houston in a sign-and-trade this offseason, missed the game against his previous group with a sprained right ankle. Wall is handling left knee concerns.

Pistons: Wayne Ellington scored 18 points– all on 3-pointers– and was a huge part of Detroit’s comeback. … Delon Wright also scored 18. … Griffin completed with 7 points and 10 rebounds.

UP NEXT

Rockets: Check Out the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday night. Dallas beat Houston 113-100 on Jan. 4.

Pistons: Host the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday night. That’s the very first of 2 straight games the groups are scheduled to play in Detroit.

Follow Noah Trister at https://twitter.com/noahtrister

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