A. Sherrod Blakely of Booth Newspapers makes an astute point. Dwight Howard’s dominance could increase Rasheed Wallace’s value this summer.
Wallace does an excellent job of defending Howard by himself. As the Orlando-Cleveland series showed, doubling Howard leaves the Magic’s shooters open and means disaster for their oppoents. Sheed is the key reason Detroit is 7-1 in its last eight games against Orlando.
Contenders are the only teams that would be concerned with stopping just one player, and contenders are usually over the salary cap. So, the Pistons could benefit from a sign and trade.
On the other hand, Ben Wallace’s career could be coming to an end, according to Chris Broussard of ESPN.com.
Wallace has been hampered by injuries, and he came off the bench in his last 17 games (including all 14 in the playoffs). He still has one season and $14 million left on his contract.
When Wallace left the Pistons for the Bulls, Chicago’s larger contract offer certainly served as the key reason. But I don’t think it was just about earning more money. I think Ben was insulted the Pistons didn’t offer more.
Wallace is very prideful, and I could see him hanging ‘em up if he’s not proud of how he can play.
The Cavaliers would seem most likely to want a Dwight Howard stopper. If Rasheed Wallace commands more than the mid-level exception, would Detroit sign and trade him for Ben Wallace and a first-round pick or two?
If the Pistons end up shooting for the class of 2010, this wouldn’t hurt their cap room. Ben could help develop a winning atmosphere. And a couple extra first rounders is much more than Detroit could have expected to get for Sheed.
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