(11) 1987 Detroit Pistons (52-30) vs. (50) 1967 Detroit Pistons (30-51)
This 1987 Detroit team was so close to the Finals…one Isiah Thomas brain fart, and 3 points in game 7 to the Celtics (remember Bird’s steal in this series). Adrian Dantley had 22 points a day, and he was followed by Thomas, who had a superb 21-4-10 season. Bill Laimbeer had 15-12 this year (and he got clocked by Robert Parish…one of my favorite moments of all time. Look it up when you get a chance…if you hate Bill Laimbeer….that video is for you…). 16 points came from Vinnie Johnson, and the Pistons got promising rookies in Joe Dumars (12-2-5) and 25 year old Dennis Rodman (7-4).
Not a bad team…Dave Bing had 20-5-4, and DeBusschere had 18-12. Eddie Miles contributed 18-4-2, while Joe Strawder had 10-10 this year.
(12) 1991 Detroit Pistons (50-32) vs. (49) 1970 Detroit Pistons (31-51)
Their first signs of slippage, as they got swept (SWEPT!) by the Bulls in the East Finals. Isiah only played 48 games, and had 16-3-9 in them, but it didn’t help against Chicago. Joe Dumars (20-2-6) took over the scoring role, while Vinnie Johnson wasn’t bad there, averaging 11 a game. Laimbeer and Rodman shared the boards, with them getting 9 from Laimbeer, and 13 from Rodman.
Not much to say…Bing had 23-4-6, and Jimmy Walker had 21-3-3. Otto Moore had 12-11 in a largely unsuccessful season. During the season, Walt Bellamy (traded from the Knicks from DeBusschere), as he wasn’t having a great season…
(13) 2002 Detroit Pistons (50-32) vs. (48) 1965 Detroit Pistons (31-49)
This was the end of the Jerry Stackhouse era in Detroit (he was traded after the year for Rip Hamilton). He had 21-4-5 (down from nearly 30 points last year, but still impressive). Clifford Robinson had 15 points, and Corliss Williamson had 14. Ben Wallace had a really great year, averaging 8-13 and 3.5 blocks. The team probably won’t get far in the tourney, but it isn’t a bad team.
Not much to say here…lots of great stats…but not a very good team. Terry Dischinger had 18-6-3, Dave DeBusschere had 17-11, and Ray Scott had 16-10-4, while Reggie Harding had 12-12. Not a lot of name power.
(14) 2003 Detroit Pistons (50-32) vs. (47) 1959 Detroit Pistons (28-44)
The year before the championship, but a ways to go until they were at that level (you know, like getting Rasheed, and Prince not sucking….). Rip Hamilton came from Washington and averaged 20-4-3, and Chauncey Billups pleasured everyone with his arrival, scoring 16-4-4 nightly. Ben Wallace grabbed a crazy 15 boards a game, not to mention his 3 blocks…decent year.
Star George Yardley (you haven’t heard of him…well I actually have) played only 46 games, which was a huge blow, as he had 21-7 when he did play. Gene Shue had 18-5-3, and Walter Dukes had 13-13. This wouldn’t have been a bad team if Yardley was there the whole year.
(15) 1984 Detroit Pistons (49-33) vs. (46) 2001 Detroit Pistons (32-50)
Isiah had a great assist year, averaging 11 of ‘em a game, in addition to 21 points. Kelly Tripuka scored his way to 21 points a night. Bill Laimbeer had 17-12, and John Long added in 16 points. It seems Isiah is becoming a great passer in addition to his scoring….
This was the Jerry Stackhouse show. Except for the 6-13 of Ben Wallace, they had basically no one good other than him. Which explains his 30-4-5 year. Look at those numbers…if you just started watching the NBA in, say, 2006, would you ever believe those numbers. Those numbers are reserved for the elite…or a man that has no other men on his team.
(16) 1955 Fort Wayne Pistons (43-29) vs. (45) 1969 Detroit Pistons (32-50)
This is actually a very loaded team. Did you even remember they played in Fort Wayne? Those teams were pretty good (this one must be, I’ve heard of six players on it…), meaning they made two straight Finals, this being the first. George Yardley had 17-10 (hey he gets better later…), Larry Foust had 17-10 too (what?!? You haven’t heard of him….Yeah, I barely know him too). Mel Hutchins had 12-9 (him too?), and old ol’ Andy Phillip had 10-5-8 (he’s one of the best 50’s players!). Frankie Brian had 10 points (probably don’t know him either…don’t worry, he isn’t very good ((historically at least…he was good back then))), and of course, Max Zaslofsky (11-3-3…you know him from the Stags….or the Knicks….maybe ((you’ve never heard of the Stags!?! Come on…join me in my life as a person that looks up NBA stuff most of my life…it’s worth it (((and if you hate it, my school starts soon ((((and will be started by the time this is posted)))) and I’ll be writing less)))))). Pretty good team.
Not a positive season. DeBusschere was traded (while having 16-12) for basically just Walt Bellamy (19-14…but in no way better than Dave), and even while Bing had 23-5-7, they still did badly. Happy Hairston had 18-12 for Detroit.
(17) 1992 Detroit Pistons (48-34) vs. (44) 1960 Detroit Pistons (30-45)
This was a pretty good year. Joe Dumars was pretty good too, scoring 20-2-5 nightly. Isiah was doing great too with 19-3-7. Dennis Rodman had a crazy, amazing year (and his first as boards leader), as he pulled down….(wait for it…….wait for it….) almost 19 rebounds. 19! Meanwhile, Bill Laimbeer was slipping to irreverence, which gave pretty much all the boards to Dennis.
This team has a pretty good front line, consisting of 23-6-4 from Gene Shue, rookie Bailey Howell’s 18-11, and 15-13 from Walter Dukes. Didn’t win much though…I wasn’t there then, I don’t know why….
(18) 1999 Detroit Pistons (29-21) vs. (43) 1963 Detroit Pistons (34-46)
This was basically just Grant Hill…He had 21-7-6 this year. Jerry Stackhouse had 15-3-3 this season, while they saw Joe Dumars play his final games, only having 11-2-4 this year, ending a solid career.
Its hard writing about these 60s teams, most of which I know little about. This one is no exception.
Bailey Howell had 23-12 this season, while big numbers came from Don Ohl (19 points), Ray Scott (16-10), and Bob Ferry (14-7). The future looked bright, as they got rookie Dave DeBusschere (13-9).
(19) 1985 Detroit Pistons (46-36) vs. (42) 1961 Detroit Pistons (34-45)
This is about the time of the statistical peaks of Bill Laimbeer (18-12), and Isiah Thomas (21-5-14). Not much else though, as the 19 points of Kelly Tripuka played only 55 games.
This is the mixing of two stars, Gene Shue (23-4-7), and sophomore Bailey Howell (24-14). Walter Dukes gave 12-14.
(20) 1986 Detroit Pistons (46-36) vs. (41) 1976 Detroit Pistons (36-46)
They got some good years here from Isiah (21-4-11), Laimbeer (17-13), Tripuka (20 points), and Vinnie Johnson (14 a night). They not only had these guys, but Joe Dumars was also added. He didn’t amount to much this year, but he definitely would in a few.
A decent team. Bob Lanier had 21-12-3, while Curtis Rowe had 16-9. Kevin Porter had a great year, averaging 13-2-10.