Daniel Gafford’s buzzer beater lifts Wizards over Pistons

Mar 7, 2023; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Washington Wizards center Daniel Gafford (21) shoots the game winning basket as time runs out against the Detroit Pistons in the fourth quarter at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Reginek-USA TODAY Sports

Daniel Gafford scored on a putback as time expired and the Washington Wizards handed the depleted Detroit Pistons their ninth straight loss, 119-117, on Tuesday night.

Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 32 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, while Kristaps Porzingis had 24 points and seven rebounds. Kyle Kuzma tossed in 23 points and Corey Kispert added 16 for Washington.

Jaden Ivey led Detroit with 26 points and 12 assists. James Wiseman had 21 points and Marvin Bagley III and Eugene Omoruyi added 15 apiece.

Detroit’s lengthy injured list included leading scorer Bojan Bogdanovic (Achilles), Alec Burks (foot), Jalen Duren (ankle), Killian Hayes (hand), Hamidou Diallo (ankle) and Isaiah Stewart (hip).

The game was originally scheduled to be played Feb. 1 but was postponed after the Pistons got stuck in Dallas due to poor weather conditions.

Wiseman had 13 points and Ivey contributed nine points and seven assists as the Pistons took a 58-53 halftime lead.

Neither side had a lead larger than eight points before the break, as both teams shot over 50 percent from the field.

The Pistons led 69-61 after Ivey fed Wiseman for an alley-oop dunk. Washington then went on a 14-2 run, including eight points from Kuzma. Beal’s three-point play with 3:10 left in the quarter gave the Wizards an 81-76 lead.

R.J. Hampton drained a 3-pointer just before the quarter ended, pulling the Pistons within a point at 89-88.

Kuzma’s layup with 10 minutes left made it 97-93. Kuzma soon converted two three-point plays for a 103-95 advantage. The Pistons wouldn’t go away, as Ivey scored on three straight possessions to cut the Wizards’ lead to 109-107.

Ivey then knocked down a 3-pointer with 3:18 left to give Detroit a one-point lead.

Beal scored on a floater with two minutes to go for a 115-113 Washington lead. Ivey tied it with a coast-to-coast layup.

Ivey gave Detroit a 117-115 edge on two free throws but Beal answered with a layup.

Kuzma then knocked the ball away from Isaiah Livers, setting up Washington’s game-winner. Beal airballed a runner but Gafford was there for the rebound.

–Field Level Media

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