Ben Wallace Giving Detroit Pistons Great Minutes, but Too Many

November 11th, 2009 by Greg Eno Leave a reply »
Ben Wallace is a 35-year-old NBA big man who is playing like he’s 25. For now.

There’s been a lot of ballyhoo over Wallace, who the Pistons snatched from the jaws of retirement last summer and signed for a league pittance.

The signing was decried, but not by me. But that’s because I figured Wallace could come off the bench when some energy was needed, maybe block a couple of shots, grab a few rebounds, and then sit back down, his night done after 10, 15 minutes.

I had no delusions of grandeur about him. No idea that he’d even be considered for a starting position, let alone be granted one.

But my blessing of the signing came with a caveat.

When a guy is publicly talking about retirement, when he’s already in that “mode,” be careful, because you have no idea when those feelings might suddenly reappear.

Wallace spoke openly after last season, which ended with him as a non-factor with the Cleveland Cavaliers, about hanging up the sneakers. Injuries had frustrated him, as did his time in Chicago, which never met anyone’s expectations—Wallace’s or the Bulls’—after he signed his big free agent ...

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