The 2004 Detroit Pistons beat the heavily favored Los Angeles Lakers in five games in the Finals in 04. Chauncey Billups as named Finals MVP at the end of that series and during the series earned the nickname ‘Mr. Big Shot,’ but what does that Pistons team win a Championship without Big Ben Wallace?
If he doesn’t get traded in a signed-in trade to Detroit along with Chucky Atkins for Grant Hill would they have won that Championship? Fortunately, the Pistons won’t have to worried about the scenario. However, according to Wallace’s former teammate , Darrell Armstrong, the former 4-time Defensive Player of the Year, didn’t want to leave Orlando. Per Armstrong, the Magic didn’t want to pay Wallace and he had $28-$30 million offer on the from the Pistons.
“The crazy thing is Ben Wallace didn’t want to leave Orlando, but he could turn down that money and I told him, dog you can’t turn down $28 to $30 million. When told me what was going on with the situation. I told him, hey big fella did anybody else offer you anything, Armstrong,” said on the What’s Your Opinion Podcast. “He was like Orlando offered me this and I said did anybody else offer you anything, he was like, yeah Detroit. I said what did they offer you? $20- $34 million. I said i’m going to miss you big dog. You can’t turned that down and it turned out to be best thing for him. He became Ben Wallace during that one season with us and went over there and became Big Ben Wallace.”
Wallace went on to win Defensive Player of the Year four-times, a four-time All-Star, named to the All-NBA team five-times, and won a Championship in 04.