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Newz Forum: BASKETBALL: Pistons open talks with Rasheed

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posted on Jul, 7 2004 @ 01:54 PM
DETROIT (AP) - Rasheed Wallace met with Joe Dumars on Tuesday at his basketball camp, in the first face-to-face conversation the forward has had with the Detroit Pistons since helping them win the NBA title last month.

"The meeting with Rasheed went well," Dumars said in an interview late Tuesday night with The Associated Press. "But there's nothing else to report right now."

Wallace, an unrestricted free agent who made $17 million last season, declined to talk about his future plans at his camp.

After going to Philadelphia to speak at Wallace's camp, and talk to him about returning to Detroit, Dumars flew Tuesday afternoon to Minneapolis where the Pistons are in a summer league.

While few teams could pay Wallace what Detroit can, Dumars said two weeks ago he refused to negotiate with him as if the Pistons were bidding against themselves.

"Even though we haven't had a lot of feedback from anybody wanting to jump in, you still have to go about it and do it the right way," Dumars said. "Even if you totally believe you are bidding against yourself, you can't try to low ball somebody. I won't do that."

Dumars has said other teams would have to convince Wallace he could win a championship for them, and be welcomed by their fans.

Detroit doesn't.

"He lived that," Dumars said.

Wallace was acquired in a three-team deal on Feb. 19 to put the Pistons over the top to help transform a contender into a champion.

And he did.

They were a good team without Wallace, ranking among the top teams in the Eastern Conference with a 34-22 record. With him, the Pistons became great. They were 20-6 in the regular season and 16-7 in the playoffs after adding him.

The Pistons beat the Los Angeles Lakers in five games for their third title, and first since 1990. Wallace's statistics were not always impressive he averaged 13 points, 7.8 rebounds and two blocks in the playoffs but his impact almost always was.

The 6-foot-11, 230-pounder made a stingy defense one of the best in league history, and an average offense better. Wallace averaged 16 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.8 blocks last season, his ninth in the NBA.

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