I was reminded by Ian at DetroitBadBoys.com of how much I loved The Bad Boys. I remember it like it was yesterday, as I watched Isiah and company win their first Championship. I was hooked on basketball from an early age. The first time I went to a game the Pistons were still playing in the Silverdome. I was too young to remember many details but I do remember sitting on the risers and the huge curtain separating the other half of the dome. I guess when you are that young those are the things that stick in your mind.
I have followed The Pistons ever since, in the good times and the bad. It’s very odd to see so many Pistons fans from across the country and for that matter from around the world. Most people tend to forget that everyone literally hated the Pistons during our championship runs in the late 80’s. To be a Pistons fan outside Detroit was unheard of, and being a Pistons fan meant we had to stick up for our boys whenever the situation arose, especially with Jordan lovers. It’s great to see how much attention this Pistons team gets and how many fans we have on the road. It’s a very odd thing to watch from a longtime defender of The Bad Boys.
I watched in sadness as parts of that team got dismantled, Mahorn and Salley leaving, Isiah and Laimbeer retiring, but the one shining part through all of that was the ever present Joe Dumars. Joe was and still is the epitome of Detroit Basketball to me. In his playing days he was one of the best, Finals MVP, All Star and humble teammate. Joe was so beloved around the league that The NBA honored Joe by forever changing the name of their annual Sportsman Award to the Joe Dumars Award. Now he is the reason for our present success, assembling a team that nobody thought would do much. Making the blockbuster trade for Rasheed Wallace to put the team over the top and win a championship. I can still hear ringing in my ears from the constant comment by the media and so called experts that “the Pistons have no chance of beating the Lakers in the Finals, with a team that has no Superstars.” Now all the GM’s are trying Dumars team first recipe when building their teams. The only thing left is the day when Dumars finally gets inducted into the NBA Hall Of Fame.
So now that I have reflected on The Original Bad Boys, I share this collage I put together and a highlight video of some fond memories.
My first game was at the Silverdome too. I even remember that damn curtain!
Excellent post Natalie, and thanks for that video.
Rodman taking Jordan down on that dunk attempt, and the look on Jordan’s face afterwards was classic. I think I’m tearing up over here.
The 80’s Pistons may have been the most fun team era to watch in Detroit hitsory. Even if some of those playoff losses to the Celtics tore my heart out. And much like Sheed, only in Detroit could Bill Laimbeer be loved.
Watching the Bad Boys team mold and evolve over a decade, from the drafting of Isiah and Kelly Tripuka to their walking of the court against Jordan and the Bulls, was one hell of a ride.
Man, I’m getting all misty…
Don’t worry Big Al and Ian, I was a bit misty myself. Bad Boys for Life!
I just watched it again FULL SCREEN – takes it to a whole ‘nother level!
Thanks Natalie, you are the queen of the montage!
Wanted to add my favorite Sheed quote….
“We don’t see ourselves as four All-Stars. We see ourselves as one unit. It’s like five fingers on a hand. You can do more damage together as a fist than spread out flat.”
–Sheed on http://en.thinkexist.com/quotes/rasheed_wallace/