Reprinted from yesterday's late editions.
The Washington Bullets "are in the groove," Elvin Hayes said Sunday night.
After the way the Bullets jumped on the Detroit Pistons on their way to a 119-106 victory at Capital Centre, it would be difficult to doubt him.
"We're really playing good," said elated Bullet coach Dick Motta. "We're getting the ball up court quickly and we made some clever passes. That was a good team we played tonight."
The Pistons also played a good team. The Bullets under the direction of rookie Larry Wright, ran when they had to and were able to play their patterns when they were slowed down.
Wright, who is trying to keep his starting job over newly acquired Tom Henderson, played perhaps his best all-around floor game of the season. He is starting to not look like a rookie.
He played a career-high 37 minutes and contributed a career-high 10 assists. He also made eight of 17 shots and had two steals as the Bullets recorded their fifth straight victory and 11th in their last 13 games.
That equals their longest winning streak of the season. They are a half-game out of first place in the Central Division.
The Bullets shot 56 per cent from the field against the Pistons, their best shooting night of the season.
Hayes led the Bullets with 30 points and Phil Chenier added 23.
Grevey's backup, Leonard Gray was ejected from the game early in the fourth quarter for throwing a punch at Chris Ford. Gary had been fouled by Ford while driving for the basket. Bob Lanier rushed in to restrain Gray by grabbing him in a bear hug from behind.
Gray broke away from the Piston Center and tried to get at Ford.
Trying to restrain Gray wasn't the only peacemaking Lanier was involved in last night.
After the game, he had to step between former Bullet Kevin Porter and Detroit coach Herb Brown.
Porter and Brown have been at odds all season and Porter blew up last night in the dressing room.
Porter asked Brown why he was taken out of the game and Brown, not liking Porter's tone, slapped him with a $100 fine.
The frustrated Porter, who has told the Pistons he wants to be traded, started yelling obscenities at Brown and called him gutless and heartless. Lanier had to restrain him.
Last night was Porter's first game at Capital Centre since he was traded by Detroit two seasons ago. The crowd of 9,392 gave him an ovation when he was introduced before the game and he delighted them with some fancy passes.
Porter totaled seven assists and scored 14 points.