Chauncey Billups surely had his fair share of memorable moments during his tenure with the Detroit Pistons. After all, you don’t receive the nickname “Mr. Big Shot” for nothing. Today, we count down a few of our favorites:
5. Chauncey’s OT Heroics Eliminate the 76ers in ’03
Game 6 of the 2003 Eastern Conference Semifinals: Needing to beat the Pistons to force a Game 7, the Allen Iverson-led Philadelphia 76ers forced overtime and appeared to be pushing Detroit to the brink. Then Chauncey took over. Competing on a sprained ankle sustained in Game 1, he managed to drain three 3-pointers in extended time, eliminating the Sixers once and for good.
4. Chauncey & Friends Take Over the 2006 NBA All-Star Game
Not one of the four Pistons selected to the 2006 NBA All-Star Game were voted in as starters but their impact was felt nonetheless.
Late in the 1st quarter, Pistons head coach Flip Saunders inserted Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton, Rasheed Wallace and Ben Wallace as one collective unit. Their presence was immediately felt as the Pistons representatives briefly took over the all-star proceedings. Their suffocating second half defense helped complete a steady comeback for the East, ultimately resulting in a 122-120 victory.
3. Chauncey Returns to The Palace
This was a tough sight for all Piston fans. Chauncey Billups was donning another team’s uniform. Yet John Mason turned in a moment that still gives us goosebumps to this day. Even though Billups was in Nuggets apparel, he still received his classic Pistons introduction. Too good.
2. Chauncey’s Miracle
2004 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals, Game 5: With the series knotted up at two games a piece, New Jersey Nets guard Kerry Kittles pushed his team’s lead to three with just 2.9 seconds remaining. he Pistons had the ball ready for the inbound pass with only 2.9 seconds left on the clock. With no time-outs remaining, the Pistons needed a miracle. Cue Mr. Big Shot:
The Pistons would eventually go on to lose the game 127-120 in triple overtime, but the moment itself will forever live in Pistons playoff history.
The 2004 NBA Finals saw the Pistons up against the Los Angeles Lakers, led by Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal, considered by many to be heavy favorites. The Pistons used that negativity as fuel and took down L.A. in 5 games on their way to the third NBA Championship in franchise history. Billups, who averaged 21 points and five assists during the series, earned the NBA Finals MVP award.
The Detroit Free Press’ “R-E-S-P-E-C-T!” headline the following morning served as a perfect summation for Detroit’s unlikely re-emergence at the top of the NBA mountaintop and it would have never been possible without Mr. Big Shot.
What do you think, Nation? Feel free to include your own favorite Chauncey Billups moment. Sound off!