ORLANDO (CBSNewYork) – Coach don’t lie!
Rasheed Wallace has decided to join the Detroit Pistons as an assistant coach for the 2013-14 season, at the expense of turning down an offer to join Mike Woodson’s staff on the New York Knicks.
“To me, what signed, sealed and delivered it, and made it more sweet, was the fact that my kids are still in Detroit,” Wallace told reporters on Monday. “And being a professional ballplayer, you’re on the road a lot, you’re missing a whole lot with your kids. The plays, the games. So now I have an opportunity to see some of that. I didn’t get a chance to do that the last few years.”
Wallace, 38, played in the league for 17 seasons, bouncing around from multiple teams, including the Washington Bullets, Portland Trail Blazers, Atlanta Hawks, Detroit Pistons, Boston Celtics and, most recently, the New York Knicks. In his five years with the Pistons, Wallace helped bring the team to two NBA Finals, including a championship in 2004.
After Lawrence Frank left the Pistons to join Jason Kidd’s staff on the Brooklyn Nets, Maurice Cheeks stepped in as the Pistons’ head coach. Wallace, a Philadelphia product, grew up watching Cheeks play for the Sixers in the late ’70s and ’80s.
While “Sheed” was know for his unique ability to play the post while also being a threat from downtown, he also goes down in history as one of the loudest and most temperamental players of all time. The former North Carolina Tar Heel has tallied 317 technical fouls in his career, which currently puts him atop the all-time leader list. Wallace also holds the record for most technical fouls in one season for his 41 “T’s” over 80 games in 2000-01.
“The big thing is when I had that passion and fire and I was cussing everybody out, I had the opportunity to make a difference by going out on the floor,” the ’95 fourth-overall pick said. “But now with me being a coach, I can still have my passion, but I have to tone it down because I can’t make a difference now. I can talk junk but I can’t back it up.”
After his stint with the Celtics, Wallace retired for two years before joining the Knicks’ veteran roster last season. After continuous foot problems, he retired for a second time on April 17.
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