Pistons look for momentum vs. visiting Jazz

Jerami Grant signed with the Detroit Pistons in large part because he wanted an expanded offensive role.The Pistons have won only two of their first nine games but Grant is proving he can handle the added responsibility.Grant established a new career high with 31 points against Milwaukee on Wednesday, then duplicated that output in a 110-105 overtime victory over Phoenix on Friday. The Pistons will look for more of the same from their new go-to scorer when they host Utah on Sunday.The Jazz have won the last eight meetings. Detroit will be seeking its first victory over Utah since Jan. 25, 2016.Grant accepted a three-year, $60 million contract offer from Detroit in free agency. His former team, Denver, offered a similar contract but he’d have remained behind Nikola Jokic, Jamal Murray and others in the Nuggets’ offensive pecking order. The two teams agreed to a sign-and-trade after Grant committed to the Pistons.”I’m very impressed with his patience and his decision-making in games,” fellow Pistons forward Blake Griffin said. “He doesn’t settle. He’ll size somebody up and seems like he can get to the hole whenever he wants.”Behind Grant, the Pistons erased a 23-point deficit against the Suns. Phoenix still led by four late in regulation before Grant made two free throws and assisted on a Mason Plumlee dunk. Grant scored seven points in overtime, including a corner 3-pointer with 18.1 seconds remaining to give Detroit a six-point lead.He’s averaging 24.8 points, placing him among the league’s top 20 scorers.”I thought he played big time – played like an All-Star,” coach Dwane Casey said. “He allowed the game to come to him. He didn’t have a lot of looks at first. He let the game come to him and I’m just as proud of him for that as anything. He didn’t get frustrated.”

Headlines