Detroit Pistons: Just put Ben Wallace and Webber in the HOF already

Ben Wallace #3 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ben Wallace #3 of the Detroit Pistons (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

It’s time to show the Detroit Pistons and Ben Wallace some respect by putting the man in the Hall of Fame.

The finalists for the 2021 Hall of Fame class were announced and Ben Wallace was on the list along with former Michigan star Chris Webber and a handful of others.

In my opinion, both guys should be locks for the Hall of Fame for a few reasons, not the least of which they were both outstanding and memorable players in the NBA.

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I’ll get to their credentials in a moment but let’s just start with the common sense reasons.

Detroit Pistons: The basketball Hall of Fame is different

Unlike the baseball Hall of Fame, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame has never been that hard to get into.

The basketball HOF has always been more forgiving, even putting in a lot of guys like Drazen Petrovic or Bill Walton whose careers were cut short due to injury.

And isn’t this how it should be? If I visit the Hall of Fame, I want to be reminded of the guys that were important in their era, not just the ones who were considered “the best.”

It is supposed to be a museum of basketball history, and while there should obviously be standards the most important one is “was this guy a big part of his era?” In the case of Ben Wallace and Chris Webber, the answer is a resounding yes.

Wallace was a part of a title team and his afro and relentlessness were symbolic of one of the best teams of that era.

Chris Webber may not have won titles, but he was one of the best power forwards of his generation and literally changed the game of basketball, not just with long shorts at the University of Michigan, but by being a big man who could pass and shoot like a guard.

They were big parts of the eras they played in and fans want to celebrate that.

Detroit Pistons: Ben Wallace has HoF credentials

In addition to being an NBA champion, Ben Wallace was widely considered the best defensive player of his generation.

He was a 4-time Defensive Player of the Year and to be honest, it could have been more.

He was a 4-time All Star and 5-time member of the NBA’s All Defensive Team in addition to making All-NBA five times.

This was a guy who barely shot the ball yet made more impact than practically anyone in the NBA. He personified a whole city, an era of basketball and changed the way teams look at the center position.

Put the man in the Hall of Fame already.

Detroit Pistons: Chris Webber changed his position

Chris Webber also has a load of All-Star and All-NBA accolades on his resume but also deserves some credit for changing basketball.

First off, the Fab Five at the University of Michigan were the most iconic college basketball team of all time. Their swagger and fashion changed how basketball was perceived, made it cool and drew in a whole new generation of young fans.

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Once he got to the NBA, Webber changed how the power forward position was played, becoming more of a playmaker and facilitator than the traditional bangers that normally played the position.

He never won a title but he was a part of some of the most fun and entertaining teams of that era. His Sacramento Kings were the early prototype for the types of teams we see now, where every guy on the floor could pass and shoot regardless of position.

Webber might not have lived up to the impossible expectations put on him coming in, but he was amazing to watch and will certainly be remembered and celebrated by any fans who watched him play.

These two guys were big personalities and great players who literally changed the game and helped define their eras.

Don’t overthink this one, just put them in the Hall of Fame where they belong.

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