Reggie Bullock went back to his old stomping grounds to turn in his best performance of the season.
The Knicks’ 3-and-D wing lived up to his billing Saturday night as he poured in a season-high 22 points in the 125-81 win over the Pistons in Detroit.
“Reggie was terrific,” coach Tom Thibodeau said.
Bullock, who had established himself as a starter and legitimate 3-point threat with the Pistons from 2015-2019, shot 8-for-12 from the field and 6-for-10 from beyond the arc. He teamed with Julius Randle to score 28 of the Knicks’ first 30 points as they put an end to their three-game losing streak in emphatic fashion.
“Obviously, I played [in Detroit] for four years, but give credit to my teammates, give praise to Jules,” Bullock said. “He definitely got me involved. I tried to space for him, set screens, get people off of him and just space.
“He’s been doing a great job all year finding shooters, finding perimeter players to be able to put the ball in the hole. I came out today and shots were falling for me, so I just kept shooting.”
Thibodeau said before the game he only planned to use Norvel Pelle on a “situational” basis after the center signed a 10-day contract on Friday night. But fourth-quarter garbage time proved to be the right time for Pelle, who had an adventurous three minutes.
The shot-blocking big man, signed for depth after Mitchell Robinson broke his foot on March 27, appeared to dislocate his right index finger while going up for an alley-oop late in the fourth quarter.
But he popped it back in before hitting a free throw and then registering two blocks on the ensuing defensive possession. Pelle added three rebounds.
“Our scouts really liked him,” Thibodeau said before the game.
Killian Hayes, the Pistons’ No. 7-overall pick who had been on the Knicks’ radar before November’s draft, returned from a labral hip tear that had kept him out since Jan. 4. He played 20 minutes, but was held scoreless, with three assists and five rebounds.
In the lead-up to the draft, the Knicks originally had Hayes as the top point guard on their board, outside of LaMelo Ball, before learning of his preexisting hip issue, The Post’s Marc Berman reported. But the Knicks ultimately landed Obi Toppin with the No. 8 pick after the Pistons passed on him to draft Hayes with the seventh pick.
Toppin scored eight points Saturday after delivering a jolt off the bench in Friday’s loss.
“I really like the way he’s been playing,” Thibodeau said.
Derrick Rose required attention after getting bloodied above his left eye on a drive to the rim early in the second quarter. But he remained in the game and finished with seven points in 21 minutes. … The Knicks got all 15 players on their roster into the game.