The Detroit Pistons will be without one of their greats next season, as Ben Wallace has confirmed that he will retire at the end of the 2012 NBA season. He confirmed before Saturday's game against the New York Knicks that this, his 16th season in the NBA, would be his last, according to mlive.com.
Wallace says that he's been planning his retirement for two years, and that his decision to come back for the 2011 season was actually harder than the decision to retire at the end of the present season. He's very firm on the fact that he needed to plan for it. He signed a two-year deal with the Pistons in 2010, so it will expire as he retires. This is his second stint with the Pistons, after first playing with them between the 2000-01 season and the 2005-06 season, including the 2004 championship team.
His legacy is strong for Detroit and, really, for the history of the league as far as defenders go. Sure he's averaged only 6.0 points per game over his career, but he's picked up just under 10 rebounds and two blocks per game over his career, as well. He was named the Defensive Player of the Year four times in five seasons, and nobody has won it more times than him. He's a four-time all-star, and has nothing left to prove in his career.