I remember back when the Detroit Pistons were making it at least to the Eastern Conference Finals every season.
In fact, that was only a couple of years ago. But a lot has changed in Detroit.
First, we'll start with the Chauncey Billups trade. I plan to write an article looking back at that trade in particular later on, so I won't take too much time on this subject. But trading their true point guard and floor general for an aging Allen Iverson really was the major move that sent the Pistons toward the draft lottery.
Also, the age of the players is starting to catch up to them. Richard "Rip" Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince, and Ben Wallace are no longer the players they once were about two-four seasons ago.
With some of the moves that were made, the team chemistry that the Pistons once had is completely gone. Most blame it on the Billups trade, and that would be what I would blame it on as well.
When Iverson came into Detroit, he caused such a stir about not wanting to be anything but a starter that the team just got really annoyed by him. I think there started to be divisions in the locker room at that point.
All that being said, I want to look back at the former Pistons back in the old days, and maybe get some discussion going about this team that most were calling a dynasty.
PG: Chauncey Billups
SG: Rip Hamilton
SF: Tayshaun Price
PF: Rasheed Wallace
C: Ben Wallace
That was the starting lineup back in the day, and it's very obvious that it made for a complete all-around team. They had two great scorers for the whole game with Rip Hamilton and Rasheed Wallace mostly, with Billups running the game from the point guard position and playing the role of Mr. Bigshot.
Billups was the player for the Pistons that would come up huge in the clutch late in games when needed, and in all honesty for a team to be a great team and be one of the top-two teams in its conference and the entire NBA, you have to have a player like that.
The defense was there as well with Tayshaun Prince and Ben Wallace leading the way. Prince always had the knack to get in the passing lanes, and he also had an amazing ability to block shots with his long arms.
Wallace, on the other hand, held down the post. He was quick on his feet, just as strong as any other big man in the game, and also had very quick hands, with incredible blocking ability for his size. Yes, Big Ben was actually very small for a center in the NBA, but his athleticism gave him the ability to bother any shot from any player.
There's the quick breakdown on those guys, and I'll probably end up going more in-depth about them in another article, but that's all I'll do in this one.
All that being said, this team was consistently a top-four team in the NBA year-in and year-out, and in my opinion was one of the best teams that we've seen in recent NBA history. The way they worked together was absolutely incredible, and the all-around skill sets fit so well together.
So what do you guys think about this old Pistons team? Do you agree that they are one of the best teams in recent NBA history. Where would you rank them in the last 40 years as a team?