"You know, Coach Wallace has done a pretty good job along those lines," Saunders said. "Right now, he's shooting the three so dang well yet he's such a good post-up player it's kind of a Catch-22. But I think what he's done is he's had a good year and he's prepared himself to have a very solid and great playoff.
"And I know that when we talked at the beginning of the year, his big thing was to win a championship, and I know that if he's got that focus and he's motivated to win a championship, he's setting the table for our whole team."
As for that "Coach Wallace" label? Well, there are a few who could see Wallace patrolling the sideline someday.
"We always talk about it," Saunders said. "Before it's all said and done I think he will. No one thought Larry Bird would get involved in anything and Larry got involved. It's the ones sometimes who you least expect it, those are the ones who end up jumping into it full force."
For long-time readers of this site, the thought really isn't anything new -- I talked about this back in November, making some of my own observations as well as pointing out this interesting quote from Flip Saunders:
I was talking with someone today, and I said, "This might sound crazy, but I think Rasheed has a lot of the ingredients to be a very good coach." If you can believe that.
He’s got a high basketball I.Q. He’s got an unbelievable amount of passion for the game. He’s a great competitor. He is a communicator. If he decides he wants to do something, he’ll go ahead and do it — doesn’t care what the ramifications are as far as what people think about it. … I’m sure referees wouldn’t want to see him on the sidelines.
But he has, with Cheikh Samb and Amir — he’s as critical of those guys, like in practice, saying to them, "If you guys can’t learn to play, you ain’t going to play." He communicates with them, but he gives them tough love at times too.
That said, I'm not convinced at all that he has the temperament to deal with the media every day following practice and twice on game days. But hey, Bill Laimbeer made the switch, something none of us would have deemed possible 20 years ago, so who knows.