1988–89 Detroit Pistons season

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1988–89 Detroit Pistons season
NBA champions
Conference champions
Division champions
Head coachChuck Daly
General managerJack McCloskey
Owner(s)William Davidson
ArenaThe Palace of Auburn Hills
Results
Record63–19 (.768)
PlaceDivision: 1st (Central)
Conference: 1st (Eastern)
Playoff finishNBA Champions
(Defeated Lakers 4–0)

Stats @ Basketball-Reference.com
Local media
TelevisionWKBD-TV
PASS Sports
RadioWWJ
(George Blaha)
< 1987–88 1989–90 >
A ticket for a November 1988 game between the Pistons and the Charlotte Hornets.

The 1988-89 NBA season was the Pistons' 41st season in the NBA and 32nd season in the Detroit metropolitan area. The Pistons moved from the Pontiac Silverdome to the brand-new Palace of Auburn Hills before the start of the season, which culminated in the Pistons' first NBA championship, sweeping the Lakers in four games in the NBA Finals a rematch from last year's NBA Finals and avenging their NBA Finals loss. Following the season, Rick Mahorn was picked up by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 1989 expansion draft and was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers soon after.

The Pistons and Lakers would face each other again 15 years later in the NBA Finals in NBA Finals, where the Pistons won in five games en route to their third NBA championship despite being underdogs to the heavily-favored Lakers.

Draft picks[edit]

Round Pick Player Position Nationality College
2 30 Fennis Dembo Forward  United States Wyoming
2 48 Micheal Williams Guard  United States Baylor
3 72 Lee Johnson Forward  United States Norfolk State

[1]

Roster[edit]

Detroit Pistons roster
Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Height Weight DOB (YYYY-MM-DD) From
SF 23 United States Aguirre, Mark 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 232 lb (105 kg) DePaul
G 4 United States Dumars, Joe 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 190 lb (86 kg) McNeese State University
F/C 53 United States Edwards, James 7 ft 1 in (2.16 m) 225 lb (102 kg) Washington
SG 15 United States Johnson, Vinnie 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 200 lb (91 kg) Baylor University
C 40 United States Laimbeer, Bill 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 245 lb (111 kg) University of Notre Dame
F/C 44 United States Mahorn, Rick 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 240 lb (109 kg) Hampton
F 10 United States Rodman, Dennis 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 220 lb (100 kg) Southeastern Oklahoma State University
F/C 22 United States Salley, John 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 230 lb (104 kg) Georgia Tech
PG 11 United States Thomas, Isiah (C) 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) 180 lb (82 kg) Indiana University Bloomington
PG 24 United States Williams, Micheal 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 175 lb (79 kg) Baylor
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  • Injured Injured

Regular season[edit]

On February 15, 1989, the Pistons traded Adrian Dantley to the Dallas Mavericks for Mark Aguirre. Dantley was unhappy relegating the leadership role on the Pistons to Isiah Thomas, while Aguirre had clashed with his coaches and teammates in Dallas. Aguirre was more amenable to deferring to Thomas, and accepted his role in Chuck Daly's system. His ability to shoot the three, post up, run the floor, and pass was instrumental in the growth of the team.

Season standings[edit]

Central Division W L PCT GB Home Road Div
y-Detroit Pistons 63 19 .768 37–4 26–15 20–10
x-Cleveland Cavaliers 57 25 .695 6 37–4 20–21 19–11
x-Atlanta Hawks 52 30 .634 11 33–8 19–22 20–10
x-Milwaukee Bucks 49 33 .598 14 31–10 18–23 11–19
x-Chicago Bulls 47 35 .573 16 30–11 17–24 12–18
Indiana Pacers 28 54 .341 35 20–21 8–33 8–22


Record vs. opponents[edit]

1988-89 NBA Records
Team ATL BOS CHA CHI CLE DAL DEN DET GSW HOU IND LAC LAL MIA MIL NJN NYK PHI PHO POR SAC SAS SEA UTA WAS
Atlanta 3–1 4–1 4–2 4–2 1–1 0–2 1–5 1–1 1–1 5–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 6–0 4–1 2–2 2–2 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 3–1
Boston 1–3 6–0 1–3 1–4 1–1 1–1 1–3 1–1 1–1 2–3 2–0 1–1 2–0 2–2 5–1 3–3 3–3 0–2 1–1 2–0 2–0 0–2 1–1 2–4
Charlotte 1–4 0–6 1–4 0–4 0–2 0–2 0–4 0–2 0–2 2–2 2–0 0–2 1–1 0–4 2–4 2–4 3–3 0–2 0–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–5
Chicago 2–4 3–1 4–1 0–6 2–0 1–1 0–6 1–1 1–1 4–2 1–1 2–0 2–0 6–0 2–2 3–2 1–3 1–1 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 0–2 3–1
Cleveland 2–4 4–1 4–0 6–0 2–0 2–0 3–3 1–1 1–1 5–1 1–1 0–2 2–0 3–3 4–0 2–2 3–2 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–2
Dallas 1–1 1–1 2–0 0–2 0–2 3–3 0–2 1–3 1–5 1–1 3–1 0–4 6–0 0–2 1–1 0–2 1–1 1–3 2–2 2–2 5–1 2–2 4–2 1–1
Denver 2–0 1–1 2–0 1–1 0–2 3–3 1–1 3–1 4–2 1–1 2–2 1–3 5–1 0–2 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–3 2–2 3–1 3–3 2–2 3–3 1–1
Detroit 5–1 3–1 4–0 6–0 3–3 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 4–2 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–4 4–0 0–4 5–0 2–0 1–1 2–0 2–0 2–0 2–0 5–0
Golden State 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 3–1 1–3 1–1 1–3 1–1 5–1 2–3 4–0 0–2 2–0 2–0 1–1 2–4 2–4 2–3 3–1 2–4 2–2 1–1
Houston 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 5–1 2–4 1–1 3–1 2–0 2–2 1–3 4–2 1–1 2–0 0–2 0–2 1–3 3–1 2–2 6–0 2–2 2–4 0–2
Indiana 1–5 3–2 2–2 2–4 1–5 1–1 1–1 2–4 1–1 0–2 1–1 0–2 1–1 2–4 1–3 0–5 0–4 1–1 2–0 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–3
L.A. Clippers 0–2 0–2 0–2 1–1 1–1 1–3 2–2 0–2 1–5 2–2 1–1 1–5 1–3 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–2 1–5 1–5 2–3 3–1 1–4 1–3 0–2
L.A. Lakers 1–1 1–1 2–0 0–2 2–0 4–0 3–1 0–2 3–2 3–1 2–0 5–1 4–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 3–3 5–0 5–1 3–1 4–2 1–3 1–1
Miami 1–1 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–2 0–6 1–5 0–2 0–4 2–4 1–1 3–1 0–4 0–2 1–1 1–1 0–2 0–4 0–4 1–3 2–4 0–4 1–5 0–2
Milwaukee 0–6 2–2 4–0 0–6 3–3 2–0 2–0 4–2 2–0 1–1 4–2 2–0 1–1 2–0 4–1 1–3 3–1 1–1 2–0 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 4–1
New Jersey 1–4 1–5 4–2 2–2 0–4 1–1 1–1 0–4 0–2 0–2 3–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–4 2–4 1–5 1–1 0–2 1–1 1–1 2–0 0–2 1–5
New York 2–2 3–3 4–2 2–3 2–2 2–0 1–1 4–0 0–2 2–0 5–0 2–0 1–1 1–1 3–1 4–2 2–4 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 5–1
Philadelphia 2–2 3–3 3–3 3–1 2–3 1–1 1–1 0–5 1–1 2–0 4–0 2–0 0–2 2–0 1–3 5–1 4–2 0–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 4–2
Phoenix 1–1 2–0 2–0 1–1 0–2 3–1 3–1 0–2 4–2 3–1 1–1 5–1 3–3 4–0 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 2–3 5–1 3–1 4–1 2–2 2–0
Portland 1–1 1–1 2–0 0–2 0–2 2–2 2–2 1–1 4–2 1–3 0–2 5–1 0–5 4–0 0–2 2–0 0–2 1–1 3–2 3–3 4–0 2–4 0–4 1–1
Sacramento 0–2 0–2 1–1 0–2 0–2 2–2 1–3 0–2 3–2 2–2 1–1 3–2 1–5 3–1 0–2 1–1 1–1 0–2 1–5 3–3 2–2 1–5 1–3 0–2
San Antonio 1–1 0–2 0–2 0–2 0–2 1–5 3–3 0–2 1–3 0–6 0–2 1–3 1–3 4–2 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–1 1–3 0–4 2–2 0–4 1–5 1–1
Seattle 1–1 2–0 1–1 0–2 1–1 2–2 2–2 0–2 4–2 2–2 1–1 4–1 2–4 4–0 1–1 0–2 1–1 1–1 1–4 4–2 5–1 4–0 3–1 1–1
Utah 1–1 1–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 2–4 3–3 0–2 2–2 4–2 1–1 3–1 3–1 5–1 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 2–2 4–0 3–1 5–1 1–3 2–0
Washington 1–3 4–2 5–1 1–3 2–2 1–1 1–1 0–5 1–1 2–0 3–1 2–0 1–1 2–0 1–4 5–1 1–5 2–4 0–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 1–1 0–2

Game log[edit]

1988–89 game log
Total: 63–19 (Home: 37–4; Road: 26–15)
1988–89 schedule

Playoffs[edit]

After finishing with the best record in the NBA, the Pistons swept through the first two rounds of the playoffs. In the Eastern Conference finals, they faced the Chicago Bulls, whom they had defeated in the conference semifinals a year earlier. Although the Bulls were able to win two of the first three games, the Pistons' use of their "Jordan Rules" defense wore out Michael Jordan, setting up Detroit's second consecutive NBA Finals appearance against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Eastern Conference First Round[edit]

(1) Detroit Pistons vs. (8) Boston Celtics: Pistons win series 3-0

Last Playoff Meeting: 1988 Eastern Conference Finals (Detroit won 4-2)

Eastern Conference Semifinals[edit]

(1) Detroit Pistons vs. (5) Milwaukee Bucks: Pistons win series 4-0

Last Playoff Meeting: 1976 Western Conference First Round (Detroit won 2-1)

Eastern Conference Finals[edit]

(1) Detroit Pistons vs. (6) Chicago Bulls: Pistons win series 4-2

Last Playoff Meeting: 1988 Eastern Conference Semifinals (Detroit won 4-1)

Player stats[edit]

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game

Regular season[edit]

Player GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
Mark Aguirre 36 32 29.7 .483 .293 .738 4.2 2.5 .44 .19 15.5
Adrian Dantley 42 42 31.9 .521 .000 .839 3.9 2.2 .55 .14 18.4
Darryl Dawkins 14 0 3.4 .474 .000 .500 .5 .1 .00 .07 1.9
Fennis Dembo 31 0 2.4 .333 .000 .800 .7 .2 .03 .00 1.2
Joe Dumars 69 67 34.9 .505 .483 .850 2.5 5.7 .91 .07 17.2
James Edwards 76 1 16.5 .500 .000 .686 3.0 .6 .14 .41 7.3
Steve Harris 3 0 2.3 .250 .000 1.000 .7 .0 .33 .00 1.3
Vinnie Johnson 82 21 25.3 .464 .295 .734 3.1 3.0 .90 .21 13.8
Bill Laimbeer 81 81 32.6 .499 .349 .840 9.6 2.2 .63 1.23 13.7
John Long 24 1 6.3 .475 .000 .846 .5 .6 .00 .08 2.0
Rick Mahorn 72 61 24.9 .517 .000 .748 6.9 .8 .56 .92 7.2
Pace Mannion 5 0 2.8 1.000 .000 .000 .6 .0 .20 .00 .8
Dennis Rodman 82 8 26.9 .595 .231 .626 9.4 1.2 .67 .93 9.0
Jim Rowinski 6 0 1.3 .000 .000 1.000 .3 .0 .00 .00 .7
John Salley 67 21 21.8 .498 .000 .692 5.0 1.1 .60 1.07 7.0
Isiah Thomas 80 76 36.6 .464 .273 .818 3.4 8.3 1.66 .25 18.2
Micheal Williams 49 0 7.3 .364 .222 .660 .6 1.4 .27 .06 2.6

Playoffs[edit]

Player GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
Mark Aguirre 17 17 27.2 .489 .276 .737 4.4 1.6 .47 .18 12.6
Fennis Dembo 2 0 2.0 1.000 .000 .000 .0 .0 .00 .00 1.0
Joe Dumars 17 17 36.5 .455 .083 .861 2.6 5.6 .71 .06 17.6
James Edwards 17 0 18.6 .471 .000 .784 2.1 .7 .06 .47 7.1
Vinnie Johnson 17 0 21.9 .455 .417 .758 2.6 2.5 .24 .18 14.1
Bill Laimbeer 17 17 29.2 .465 .357 .806 8.2 1.8 .35 .47 10.1
John Long 4 0 2.0 1.000 .000 1.000 .0 .0 .00 .00 1.2
Rick Mahorn 17 17 21.2 .580 .000 .654 5.1 .4 .53 .76 5.7
Dennis Rodman 17 0 24.1 .529 .000 .686 10.0 .9 .35 .71 5.8
John Salley 17 0 23.1 .586 .000 .667 4.6 .5 .53 1.47 8.9
Isiah Thomas 17 17 37.2 .412 .267 .740 4.3 8.3 1.59 .24 18.2
Micheal Williams 4 0 1.5 .000 .000 1.000 .5 .5 .25 .00 .5

NBA Finals[edit]

The Pistons' overpowering play allowed them to sweep the Lakers, who struggled to fill the defensive void left by Byron Scott's injury prior to the start of the Finals. Joe Dumars was named Finals MVP. In addition, Magic Johnson pulled a hamstring early in the second game, and unable to play the rest of the series. The Lakers depleted backcourt allowed the Pistons to easily win the 1988-89 NBA Championship.

Game Home Team Road Team series
Game 1 Detroit 109 L.A. Lakers 97 1–0
Game 2 Detroit 108 L.A. Lakers 105 2–0
Game 3: L.A. Lakers 110 Detroit 114 3–0
Game 4: L.A. Lakers 97 Detroit 105 4–0

Pistons win series 4-0

Award winners[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-03-17. Retrieved 2009-05-05.