Pistons fans have something to be excited about with the announcement that the team will retire the respective numbers of Ben Wallace and Chauncey Billups this season.
Both players have been the foundation of the Pistons organization for years. As a result, an NBA championship went home to Detroit’s backyard in 2004.
Ben Wallace #3 will be honored during halftime on January 16, 2016 against the Golden State Warriors while Chauncey Billups, who wore the #1 during his career with the Pistons, will have his time to be honored on February 10 when the Pistons face the Nuggets.
“Our franchise has an extraordinary history and it’s important that we recognize the players who not only achieved great things, but also helped define what it means to be a Piston,” said Pistons Owner Tom Gores.
“Chauncey Billups and Ben Wallace are legends in Detroit and we are excited to honor their success.”
Wallace, a 4-time defensive player of the year and also a 4-time all-star, was acquired by the Pistons during a trade sending Grant Hill to Orlando. During his time with the Pistons, he was the only player in NBA history to record 1,000 rebounds, 100 blocks, and 100 steals in 4 consecutive seasons from 2001-2004. The accolade made Wallace as the cover player to NBA 2k5.“We celebrated many great accomplishments during my years in Detroit and to be recognized for my contributions in this way, I’m honored,” said Wallace.
“I look forward to sharing this experience with all the fans who supported me throughout my years as a Piston.”
Billups, who was nicknamed “Mr. Big Shot” because of his uncanny ability to drain clutch shots, was the NBA’s 2004 Finals MVP when he averaged 21.0 points, 3.2 rebounds and 5.2 assists. He came to the Pistons as a free agent and was able to make the all-star team thrice during his 8 seasons with the team.
“This is a franchise with great history and tradition. To be recognized amongst the all-time great players in team history is special and I look forward to celebrating the achievements, memories and great times we shared together.”
Both Wallace and Billups, went on different ways during the tail end of their careers but opt to end their careers with the Pistons.