Chicago Bulls: 15 best defenders of all-time

(Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bulls
Photo by Steve Russell/Toronto Star via Getty Images /

6. player. 24. . Center. 2006-2008. Ben Wallace

Prior to joining the Chicago Bulls, Ben Wallace established himself as one of the greatest defensive players in the history of basketball. While on the Detroit Pistons, Wallace redefined what a superstar was, making his impact on the defensive end while handling a low-usage role on offense.

Never once in his career did Wallace ever average even 10 points per game. Those Pistons teams — including the World Champions in 2004 — are often lauded for not having a true superstar, but it’s not outrageous to peg Wallace as their best player.

He won Defensive Player of the Year four times while with the Pistons, and he established a new way of looking at players in the NBA. Guys to follow him such as Draymond Green, Andre Roberson and Robert Covington have received greater praise because their defensive contributions are more accurately recognized.

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Therefore, in the summer of 2006, Wallace, fresh off a dominant run with the Pistons, was one of the best free agents on the market.

The Bulls brought him in on a big contract to redefine their defense and elevate them back into contention. That elevation never happened, and the Bulls cut ties after less than two seasons.

In those two seasons, however, Wallace was still dominant on the defensive end. His 6.0 Defensive Box Plus-Minus is by-far the highest in franchise history, and he still made the All-Defensive Second Team one time with Chicago.

His block percentage of 4.3 is also a franchise-high mark as he protected the rim like no other.

While the modern NBA may have been better positioned to challenge Wallace, back in the late ‘00s his rim-protection was not only heroic, it was enough to change a defense almost single-handedly.