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Sporting News Top 50 NBA Players

Stan McNeal over at The Sporting News ranked the Top 50 NBA players. Where do the Pistons fit in?

15. Ben Wallace, Pistons. His interior defense, blue-collar rebounding and relentless hustle make him the most irreplaceable Piston. He'd be ranked higher if not for his paltry 9.7 scoring average last season.

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26. Chauncey Billups, Pistons. Ask five coaches who'd be the toughest Piston to replace and you'd likely get five different answers. But Billups' big-shot history and overpowering strength as a point guard put him ahead of all the Pistons except Wallace.

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30. (tie) Richard Hamilton, Pistons; Tayshaun Prince, Pistons. OK, we give up on trying to decide who's better. Each brings something different to the Pistons. "Rip" Hamilton is a tireless player whose movement without the ball and shooting are keys to the team's halfcourt offense. With his gangly body, Prince defends every position except the point and is an effective scorer who can shoot the 3 and drive to the basket.

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47. Rasheed Wallace, Pistons. Is he too unselfish or is it that he doesn't want the responsibility of a leader? Whatever, he has the talent to rank much higher than this.

Funny how the highest paid starter is the lowest on this list. I agree that Rasheed Wallace could rank much higher if he focused more on personal stats, but I really think he's adapted his game to fit into a team mentality. He's still an excellent defender and has proven to be pretty clutch with the three-ball. Are you telling me he's not more valuable than a guy like Joe Johnson or Corey Maggette?

But I have no real gripes -- all five starters got listed, which is how it should be.

NBA Top 50 [Sporting News]