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Celebrating Chuck Daly

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Chuck Daly was laid to rest in Florida today, and my FanHouse colleague Tim Povtak was at the funeral:

The NBA came from around the country Wednesday to celebrate the life and mourn the death of Chuck Daly, but nothing was more impressive than his collection of pallbearers.

It was the nucleus of his two championship teams in Detroit, the ones that transformed him from just another coaching lifer into a Hall of Famer and Olympic Gold Medalist revered by all.

Isiah Thomas, Joe Dumars, Vinnie Johnson, Rick Mahorn and Bill Laimbeer were at his side. The Bad Boy Pistons and their leader one final time.

"I think when you go through the things we did together, there is a bond that never breaks,'' said Laimbeer. "This was a sad time, but a time to celebrate who he was, and what he did, and how loved he was.''

[...] Also there, and serving as pallbearer, was Dallas coach Rick Carlisle, who left the church immediately after the service and flew to Denver, where his team played a few hours later.

"Missing this (funeral) was not an option,'' Carlisle said.

Carlisle, president of the NBA Coaches Association, is a former assistant coach under Daly. He, too, forged a bond that never broke, like many of those that Daly touched through a life of coaching. Carlise is the one who created the CD lapel pins that coaches have been wearing through the playoffs. Everyone was wearing one Wednesday.

Needless to say, you'll probably want to read the whole article.