It's a slow day for news, but it's Friday and I imagine many of you are just itching for something to pass the time before you punch out. So, even though it's not particularly relevant to anything happening right now, let me present some highlights from the Grant Hill era, courtesy of YouTube -- I don't understand the music selection, but the film brings back memories:
I never had full season tickets for the Pistons, but there were two years where we bought a couple of those mini-season packages to create our own half-season package during the 1993-94 and 1994-95 seasons. On the surface, those seasons were rather non-descript -- the Pistons won a combined 43 games those two years -- but I was a kid and just happy to be there. And besides, it's not like I didn't get to see anything noteworthy -- the first year marked the final seasons for Bill Laimbeer, who retired after 11 games, and Isiah Thomas, who suffered through an injury-marred 58 games. It was also the year that Lindsey Hunter and Allan Houston came into the league as the 10th and 11th picks in the draft, respectively.
The real gem of those two years, however, was watching Grant Hill take the league by storm the following season. I'll never forget, I attended the very first exhibition game of the 1994-95 season, and after the Pistons gained control of the tip-off, Joe Dumars brought the ball upcourt before lobbing a perfect alley-oop pass to the rookie Hill. You couldn't have scripted it any better, it was as if Dumars was literally passing the torch.
Even though the Pistons never achieved much playoff success with Hill at the helm, he helped give the Pistons an identity that they were sadly lacking immediately after the original Bad Boys era passed. And even though he left for "greener" no-state-income-tax-having pastures of Florida, his departure did help facilitate the arrival of Ben Wallace and Chucky Atkins, so even the most offended fans have more or less forgiven him today.
Could he return to Detroit next season as a reserve? Well, that's certainly a possibility, especially if you believe the rumors coming out of Orlando of a possible contract buyout this summer, but we'll save talk about that for another day. For now, just sit back and enjoy watching what once was perhaps the game's most exciting player.
Best of Grant Hill [YouTube]