The lanky forward, whose face resembles like the MAD magazine cover. Stood right in front of Kevin Martin on a flashy pass by Ricky Rubio, Kevin posterized Tayshaun Prince, as Tayshaun went on to get the ball as if nothing happened.
Ten or twelve years ago, it could have been a different story. The old Tayshaun Prince could have swatted the ball out towards the bleacher leaving every inch of soul left in it.
After bouncing up with teams such as the Grizzlies, Boston and back to Detroit, Tayshaun falls out of rotation last season while playing measly minutes. He is now signing up with Minnesota for a one year veteran’s minimum deal at $1.4 Million. Something we could never have thought of a few years ago.
Back in 2003, Detroit had a chance to draft Carmelo Anthony as their second overall pick. But the Pistons opted to draft an unknown European center in Darko Milicic. Prince was a thriving all-star player at that time and drafting a player playing the same position is already a redundancy. Detroit went on to win an NBA championship the following year (2004). And Darko came out a bust while Carmelo proved to be a franchise cornerstone in Denver.
(At least Darko can do this)
With injuries throughout his career, Tayshaun is a step slower and a shell of his old self. Signing for a one year veteran’s minimum deal isn’t actually the ideal happy ending you want in a career. But it’s about answering a deeper calling. To be able to mentor last year’s rookie of the year, Andrew Wiggins and to impart knowledge to a young and willing team is something gratifying. Teaming up with the 39-year old Kevin Garnett, their roles are to shape up this team to a future championship contender. Something he had experienced when he was in Detroit, with Chauncy Billups and Rip Hamilton taking turns in guiding him. This would be his “pay it forward” season. At 6-foot-9 he still is a good addition to the team. He defends really well and can be a point forward like what he is doing for the entirety of his career.
That lanky body and freckled face still stood tall. He may not be a star anymore, but his light isn’t fading.
The goal is still to win, different path this time but same destination.