Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Game Preview

Magic's Nelson sticks by guarantee against Pistons

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- Jameer Nelson is sticking to his guarantee.

The Detroit Pistons don't blame him.

Shortly after going down 3-1 in the second round, Orlando's point guard said the Magic would go on the road and beat Detroit to extend the series.

"What am I supposed to do? Guarantee a loss?" Nelson asked Monday. "We've got to win the game. We have the confidence that we can do it.

"I believe it."

The Pistons have heard their fair share of guarantees over the years, usually from teammate Rasheed Wallace, and they responded to Nelson's with a collective yawn.

"He doesn't have anything to lose by saying that," Tayshaun Prince said. "One thing he's probably trying to do is spark his club."

Detroit might be without Chauncey Billups when it hosts Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinal.

Billups' Bentley was in the parking lot well before the team's midmorning practice to get treatment on his strained hamstring and go through a workout with strength and conditioning coach Arnie Kander.

"If you look at it from three or four days ago to today, it's night and day," Kander said. "Running good. Feeling good.

"He's had no setbacks and he comes in every morning feeling better."

If Billups sits out for a second game in a row, coach Flip Saunders insisted it will have nothing to do with having a cushion in the series.

"When he's ready to go, he's going to play," Saunders said. "If we were down, it wouldn't matter."

The rest of the story here.

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