Where are they now: 2004 Detroit Pistons championship team

AUBURN HILLS, MI - JUNE 15: Ben Wallace #3 (C) of the Detroit Pistons holds up the Larry O'Brien NBA Championship trophy as he celebrates with teammatesafter defeating the Los Angeles Lakers 100-87 in game five of the 2004 NBA Finals on June 15, 2004 at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, Michigan. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Tom Pidgeon/Getty Images) (2004 Getty Images)

This article first appeared in the Pistons Pivot Newsletter, a periodical newsletter for Pistons fans with breaking news, analysis and more. Sign up for it here, or by using the form below.

Welcome to the Pistons Pivot Newsletter, our newest ClickOnDetroit offering for Pistons fans!

I’m Ken. I write a bunch of newsletters here at ClickOnDetroit, but I’m an avid basketball fan. So this will be a little extra special for me. We’ll send this periodically with some breaking news, analysis -- maybe a rant or two. If this is something you’d enjoy, welcome aboard! If not, you can manage your subscription right here.

🏆 Catching up with 2004 Pistons

For me, my biggest Detroit Pistons team is the 2004 championship squad. I know, the Bad Boys were amazing and I know all about them -- don’t you worry. But I didn’t get to watch them as they were winning.

So, the nostalgia takes me to the Ben Wallace, Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton era of Pistons basketball, commonly known as the “Going to Work” era, a product of the Bad Boys Pistons era.

I often end up going down a rabbit hole with athletes, wondering what happened to them, where they ended up, and so on. So, I figured, let’s take a look: Where are key members of the 2004 Pistons team now?

AUBURN HILLS, MI - JUNE 15: The Detroit Pistons pose for a team picture after defeating the Los Angeles Lakers in game five of the 2004 NBA Finals on June 15, 2004 at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, Michigan. The Pistons won 100-87. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Ben Wallace

Ben Wallace, from Virginia Union University, of course, was the beast in the middle for the Pistons, winning NBA Defensive Player of the Year four times, tied for the most in NBA history. Nowadays, Big Ben is the president and part owner of the NBA G League team in Grand Rapids. They are no longer affiliated with the Pistons, but Wallace remains a Michigander.

Chauncey Billups

After retiring in 2014, “Mr. Big Shot” joined ESPN and became one of the best TV analysts around -- so good, in fact, that he quickly became a hot name in NBA coaching and front office circles. After a couple of years of rumors, in 2020, Billups was hired as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Clippers under head coach Tyronn Lue. I’m sure we’ll see Billups leading a team as a head coach in the near future.

Richard Hamilton

“Rip” Hamilton, the masked mid-range king of the NBA, retired in 2013. These days, Rip is enjoying the family life, participating in charity events and he’s still repping the Pistons all the time on his Instagram page. Yes sir!

Tayshaun Prince

The “Prince of the Palace” was the youngest of the championship crew, and played until 2016, finishing his career in Minnesota, where he moved into the front office. In 2017, Prince joined the Memphis Grizzlies as special assistant to general manager. And in 2019, he was promoted to Vice President of Basketball Affairs. I’m sure we’ll see Tayshaun running a team in no time.

Rasheed Wallace

Sheeeeeeeeeed! The trash-talker of the Pistons 2004 team, Rasheed Wallace is seemingly always around town, doing something for the community. He was very active in getting clean water supplies to Flint during the water crisis. Wallace joined the Pistons coaching staff for a year in 2013, under Stan Van Gundy. These days, he’s the boys varsity basketball head coach at Charles E. Jordan High School in Durham, North Carolina. Ball don’t lie!

Corliss Williamson

“Big Nasty” was a huge part of the ’04 team off the bench, bringing the post-game and ferocious defense. After retiring as a player in 2007, Williamson entered the coaching ranks, starting in college basketball, and eventually as an assistant coach for the Kings, Magic and Suns, up until 2019.

Mehmet Okur

My guy “Memo” was one of my favorite players on this team. The Turkish-born center was “The Money Man” off the bench for Detroit. Okur went on to work in the Utah Jazz organization before working in player development for the Suns.

Lindsey Hunter

The longtime Pistons backup point guard was a fan favorite. Lindsey Hunter retired in 2010 and eventually became an assistant coach with the Suns. He was the interim head coach for the Suns in 2013, before moving to the Warriors staff. Now, he’s the head coach at Mississippi Valley State.

Darvin Ham

One of my personal favorites, Darvin Ham -- a Saginaw native -- brought the grit off the bench for Detroit. Ham has been an assistant coach for the last 10 years or so, with the Lakers, Hawks and currently with the Bucks. Ham’s son is an assistant coach at Saginaw Valley State University.

🏀 Shoot your shot

Thanks for reading the Pistons Pivot Newsletter. Feel free to reach out with any comments or ideas you have about the team -- or just to say hello. Until next time,

- Ken Haddad (Contact me: Email | Twitter)

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