Joakim Noah recalls Rasheed Wallace doing the ‘most disrespectful s–t ever’ to him in the 2007-08 season

Jesse Cinquini
4 Min Read
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Former NBA star big man Joakim Noah recently told the story of an interaction he had with Rasheed Wallace during the 2007-08 campaign, back when Noah was a rookie and with the Chicago Bulls.

“I love Sheed,” Noah said of Wallace. “Sheed was a motherf—–. When my rookie year, I’ll never forget it. I play against Sheed. He gets the ball in the post. He goes, ‘I’m gonna inside pivot. I’m gonna pump fake. I’ma take one dribble, and I’ma shoot it.’ He looks back. I’m like [flustered face]. He did that same s—, made it. He would tell you — that’s how comfortable they were. They were winning. They were winning champ — they were so good that that’s how f——, Sheed didn’t give a f—, man. I love Sheed. But, that was the most disrespectful s— ever.”

The Bulls drafted Noah with the No. 9 overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft after a successful college career at the University of Florida, where he won two NCAA titles playing alongside future pros such as Al Horford — who is currently a member of the Boston Celtics — and Corey Brewer.

But it took some time for the 39-year-old to learn how to be an elite player on the defensive end of the floor in the NBA like he was at the collegiate level. In 74 games played as a rookie during the regular season, Noah averaged 0.9 steals and 0.9 blocks per game to go along with 5.6 rebounds per contest.

Wallace, conversely, was in the latter stages of his NBA career by the time Noah began his stint in the league. But Wallace was still a very effective player for Detroit, as he averaged 12.7 points, 6.6 rebounds, 1.2 steals and 1.7 blocks per game in his second-to-last season with the Detroit Pistons and earned an All-Star appearance.

The 2007-08 iteration of the Pistons had a much more successful season than the Bulls did. Noah’s Bulls were one of the worst teams in the Eastern Conference, as they finished the regular season with a 33-49 record and missed out on the playoffs.

There was a positive spin to the Bulls’ underwhelming season, though, as the franchise landed the No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft and selected Derrick Rose, who won the MVP award with Chicago in the 2010-11 season.

The Pistons and Wallace, however, went on a playoff run in 2008. The team reached the Eastern Conference Finals, where it lost to Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and the Celtics — who went on to win the title — in six games.

It’s hard to imagine that Noah will forget his encounter with Wallace when the former was in his first season in the NBA anytime soon.

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Jesse is an aspiring sports journalist that has previously worked as a staff writer at SB Nation’s CelticsBlog and The Knicks Wall.