NBA Hall of Famer, who claims the league has gone ‘soft’, looks unrecognizable from his championship-winning playing days
- Wallace spent nine seasons with the Pistons, where he was highly successful
- He became the first undrafted player ever inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2021
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Former Detroit Pistons superstar and Basketball Hall of Famer Ben Wallace who previously claimed the NBA has gone soft, has shocked fans by looking ‘unrecognizable’ from his playing days.
During his 16-year career, Wallace earned a reputation as one of the toughest players in the league after going undrafted following a four-year career in college.
Wallace became the first undrafted player inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2021.
He originally signed with the then Washington Bullets – now Wizards – after playing one game in Italy with Viola Reggio Calabria.
Wallace truly made a name for himself during a nine-year stint with the Detroit Pistons, where he earned a long list of accolades, including four Defensive Player of the Year awards, five All-Defensive First Team honors, and four All-Star nods.
Ex-Piston and Hall of Famer Ben Wallace is said to look ‘unrecognizable’ from his playing days
The 2004 NBA champion become known for sporting cornrows or an afro for several years
He has now grown out a full beard and began to go grey leading to the ‘unrecognizable’ claims
He also had the most minutes of any Pistons player during the 2004 NBA title run that saw Detroit defeat the Los Angles Lakers 4-1 in the series.
During that time, he became known for wearing his hair in either cornrows or an afro for many years before cutting it and sporting a more standard haircut. He has now grown out a beard as his hair has begun to grey.
Back during the lead up to his Hall of Fame induction, Wallace claimed the league has grown softer since the time they graced the hardwood.
‘I think the game got a little bit soft,’ Wallace said, but added that he would still find a way to be as impactful as he was back in the day.
‘I figured out in my career that if you do something often enough and you’re good at it, they probably won’t call it.
‘If you want to play defense, there’s no rule you can put in place to stop me from playing defense.
‘I’ll figure out a way around the rules.’