Originally created 12/16/00

Timberwolves stop Pistons



AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Kevin Garnett had 26 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists as the Minnesota Timberwolves beat the Detroit Pistons 99-90 Friday night.

Timberwolves guards Terrell Brandon, Chauncey Billups and Anthony Peeler combined for 48 points.

Detroit's Joe Smith scored 16 points in his first game against his former team. He signed with the Pistons after his contract with the Timberwolves was voided by the NBA in October because of a secret agreement that violated the salary cap.

Jerry Stackhouse paced Detroit with 29 points.

Detroit led for most of the first half and was ahead by as much as nine on several occasions.

But Minnesota opened the second half with eight straight points to take a 51-47 lead. The Pistons briefly regained the lead in the third quarter, before Minnesota responded with an 11-3 run to take a 75-68 lead.

Smith was greeted by his former teammates with handshakes and hugs before the game. Then he went out and scored seven points in the first five minutes of action.

The NBA fined the Timberwolves $3.5 million and took away five first-round draft picks as punishment for the Smith deal. One of the picks was reinstated after Minnesota owner Glen Taylor and VP Kevin McHale agreed to stay away from the team until the summer.

Notes: The Timberwolves have won five of their last six games. ... It was "Big Hair, No Hair Night" at the Palace. Anyone who met either description could buy a ticket for $5. Anyone willing to let their head be shaved could get in for free.