In his recent interaction with the press at the NBA Finals media day. Devin Booker spoke about growing up in Michigan and how the Pistons inspired him.
In only his first NBA Playoffs appearance, Booker has clinched a berth in the NBA Finals. The Suns’ star has been stated as the next Kobe Bryant as well by many NBA analysts.
The 24-year old has averaged 27.0 PPG, 6.4 RPG, and 4.8 APG so far in the post-season, shooting 44.4% from the field and an incredible 91.3% from the free-throw line.
Booker recently touched upon growing up in Michigan while talking to the press. The former 3-point contest winner’s dad Melvin Booker played basketball for the Grand Rapids Hoops in his wife’s hometown Grand Rapids Michigan.
The Phoenix star was born and raised in Grand Rapids. Booker’s father played his basketball career overseas. Though, his father was a major reason for him choosing to play the game of basketball.
Devin Booker credits the Detroit Pistons for teaching him the game of basketball
Booker has been an ardent fan of the Detroit Pistons since his childhood days as he grew up in the state of Michigan.
The Pistons era from 2003-2008 was one of the best in its entire franchise history. The Detroit team dominated the eastern conference for 5-years.
The hiring of Hall of Famer Larry Brown as head coach. That was followed by the acquisition of 4x NBA All-Star Rasheed Wallace paved the way for a championship
The Pistons finished the 2003-04 regular season with a 54-28 record. They defeated the New Jersey Nets in seven games after coming back from a 3-2 deficit in the conference finals.
The Pistons then faced the highly favored Lakers in the NBA Finals, who were coming off a 3-peat in 2002. The Lakers were led by the dominant duo of Shaquille O Neal and Kobe Bryant.
However, to everyone’s surprise, the Pistons defeated the Lakers in dominant fashion, winning the 2004 NBA championship with Chauncey Billups being crowned Finals MVP.
The 2004-05 season saw one of the biggest controversies in all American sports when a major brawl broke out between the fans and the players during a Pacers and Pistons match. This incident was termed malice at the palace.
What followed was a series of heavy fines and suspensions among the players that were involved. It is still considered to be one of the darkest days in basketball history.
The Pistons had the best overall record in the NBA during the 2004-05 season. Four players out of its starting five were named All-Star. This list included Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton, Rasheed Wallace, and Ben Wallace.
The Pistons would continue to dominate the East but were unable to win another championship losing to the likes of Dwayne Wade and Shaquille O Neal in the Miami Heat and LeBron James in Cleveland.
In his first NBA Finals appearance, Booker faces the Milwaukee Bucks. The Suns are heavily favored to win Game One since they have home-court and Bucks’ best player Giannis Antetokounmpo is considered doubtful for Game One.