CHICAGO - The Detroit Pistons can breathe a little easier. There won't be a Game 7, after all.
Richard Hamilton scored 23 points, and the Pistons beat the Chicago Bulls, 95-85, in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinals last night, winning a series that turned tense after Detroit won the first three games.
No NBA team has lost a best-of-seven series after winning the first three games, and the Pistons rejected the Bulls' shot at history.
Down by 48-43 at halftime, the Pistons outscored the Bulls by 31-21 in the third quarter to take a 74-69 lead, and Chicago could not sustain any momentum in the fourth.
Detroit's Chauncey Billups was just 3 for 12 from the field but scored 11 of his 21 points in the third quarter.
Rasheed Wallace had 16 points and 13 rebounds for the Pistons, while Tayshaun Prince added 17 points and nine rebounds.
A jumper by Wallace and a hook shot by Prince made it 85-73 with 2 minutes, 20 seconds left, and Detroit hung on from there.
Chicago's P.J. Brown attempted just three shots in the second half after scoring all of his 20 points in the first two quarters, eclipsing his previous playoff career high of 19. Luol Deng added 17 points.
Spurs 88, Suns 85
PHOENIX - Phoenix almost pulled it off. Instead, it was heartbreak in the desert, and San Antonio moved within one victory of the Western Conference finals.
Bruce Bowen sank a three-pointer with 36 seconds to play to put the Spurs ahead, 84-81, giving them their first lead since an 11-10 advantage six minutes into the game.
San Antonio held on from there to go up by three games to two in the best-of-seven series.