Ben Wallace ( born September 10, 1974 in White Hall, Alabama ) is a former American professional basketball player who was considered one of the best defenders at his position. He was four times awarded the Defensive Player of the Year (2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006).
Wallace grew as the tenth of eleven children in rural Alabama. As a versatile high school athlete, he got awards for basketball, baseball and American football. Since he did not make the direct way into a university, he attended a junior college for two years. He then took in 1994 on the recommendation of NBA pro Charles Oakley a sports scholarship at Virginia Union University. After two more years, he finished his university career and tried to jump into the NBA. In the NBA Draft of 1996 he was, however, elected by any team.
After Wallace in the " Entry Draft, " which had not been selected at the most lucrative U.S. professional league NBA, he could still get good performance in the NBA Summer League but a contract with the Boston Celtics, but still before him as a " free agent " beginning of the season again dismissed. Boston wanted to use the little more than two meters Wallace as a winger, what this really missing the ball and throw feel. Another team, the Washington Bullets, Wallace offered but on a contract. Three years Wallace played for the Bullets, the 1997 in " Wizards " renamed until they sent him against Isaac Austin at the Orlando Magic. After only one season with Orlando Wallace moved in exchange for Grant Hill to the Detroit Pistons.
With the Pistons Wallace in 2004, NBA champion. The following year, the team reached the final, losing to the San Antonio Spurs to Finals MVP Tim Duncan. In the seasons 2001/02 to 2005/06 season he was appointed each year in the NBA All-Defensive First Team; in the 2006/07 season in the NBA All-Defensive Second Team. In the years 2004, 2005 and 2006, followed by three more appearances on the All-Star Game. In the 2001 /02 season, he led the NBA Statistics for the rebounds and shot blocks, which had succeeded before him only Kareem Abdul- Jabbar (1975 /76), Bill Walton (1976 /77) and Hakeem Olajuwon (1989 /90) ( before 1973 the shot blocks were not counted, which is why Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain are missing in this series). After the 2005/ 06 season he became a free agent with the Chicago Bulls, with whom he had signed a four- year contract for 60 million dollars. During the 2007/ 08 season, he was traded along with power forward Joe Smith in exchange for Drew Gooden, Larry Hughes, Shannon Brown and Cedric Simmons to the Cleveland Cavaliers. From Cleveland he was sent in 2009 in one of the biggest blockbuster trades of the NBA to Phoenix (along with Sasha Pavlovic ), in exchange for Shaquille O'Neal. With the Phoenix Suns, he agreed termination of contract, by which he received about 10 million U.S. $.
On 12 August 2009 he signed a contract with the Detroit Pistons. After the season 2011/2012 he finished his career.
Due to its intimidating nature of the defense, he was nicknamed "The Beast". Another nickname is " Big Ben", why was heard both at player introductions as well as successful campaigns for his part in home games always the striking Westminster chimes of Big Ben.