Ben Wallace is formally joining the Detroit Pistons front office as a basketball operations and team engagement advisor, the team announced Friday. Wallace has been a mainstay with the Pistons in recent months including representing the team at the NBA Draft Lottery that netted them the No. 1 overall pick and eventually Cade Cunningham. He also has been at the practice facility throughout training camp working with the big men, and he was in the stands for the preseason opener against the San Antonio Spurs.
Wallace will be tasked with assisting Troy Weaver and the operations staff, Dwane Casey and the coaching staff and work with young players on both the Pistons and the Motor City Cruise. He will also engage in businesses and community initiatives, the team announced.
“Ben is a Hall of Famer and a Pistons legend who has continued to come back home and support our team and our organization,” said team owner Tom Gores in a media release. “He embodies everything we are building here and will be a real asset to Dwane, Troy and the rest of our staff. Ben helped set the standard for what it means to be a Piston and will be a tremendous influence for our young players.”
Wallace has been on the business side of basketball in recent years, including acquiring a minority ownership stake in the Grand Rapids Drive in 2018. Wallace reportedly sold his stake in the team some time after the Drive’s affiliate agreement ended with the Pistons. Eventually, the Drive reached a new affiliate agreement with the Denver Nuggets and rebranded as the Grand Rapids Gold.
Wallace spoke to the media before the draft lottery and mentioned some of the skills he brings to the table that he will now be able to employ in his new role with the Pistons. From Omari Sankofa in the Detroit Free Press:
“I think my knowledge of the game and what I can bring to the game, it goes a little bit past coaching,” Wallace. ”I just think I have a lot more to give to the game than just coaching. I can recognize talent. I just feel like given the opportunity, especially when it comes to the game of basketball, that I can be successful in almost any role.”