Mark Spears of Yahoo Sports broke the story that Pistons great Chauncey Billups is retiring:
Billups was best known for his first stay with the Pistons from 2002-08. He earned the nickname “Mr. Big Shot” for his clutch shooting when he led Detroit to the 2004 NBA championship and another Finals appearance in ’05. He was part of the Pistons’ star foursome that also included Ben Wallace, Rip Hamilton and Rasheed Wallace.
Billups said the “best memories” of his career were with the Pistons.
“Before that, my career was in jeopardy in a few different stages,” Billups said. “I persevered, sustained and continued to work hard, and finally got my opportunity in Detroit, and I never turned back from that point. That’s what made it so sweet to me to win a championship after what I went through. I had to scrap and fight to get through it and to reach the pinnacle made it even sweeter.
“Winning the championship was the ultimate. I never set out to win the [Finals] MVP. Winning the championship was enough.”
…Billups averaged 15 points, 5.4 assists and made 38.7 percent of his 3-point attempts during his NBA career. He made the All-NBA second team twice, the All-NBA third team once and the All-Defense team twice. He finished with 15,802 points, ranks 39th all-time with 5,636 assists and sixth with 1,830 3-pointers made. He also had 1,051 steals in his career.
Read on for more, visit his NBA player page for stats & such, have a look at his top 10 Piston highlights from the NBA and definitely read this great feature on Chauncey Billups at Grantland by Jonathan Abrams.
I’m not sure if Billups will make the Hall of Fame, but he’s one of their all-time greats in my book! It’s rare when I use one of my own photos here – this one’s from a 2006 game at the Palace where I had a great time. View it bigger and see more in my Pistons v Grizzlies slideshow.
More Detroit Pistons on Michigan in Pictures!