You wouldn't know it by looking at him, but it sounds like recent re-retiree Rasheed Wallace is having an incredibly smooth, productive transition to the coaching ranks as an assistant to new Detroit Pistons head coach Maurice Cheeks.
Here's emerging center Andre Drummond on what it's been like to be coached on the finer points of big-man play by the four-time All-Star: “He’s been great for me. He’s been a great guy and he’s definitely a great dude to be around. [...] I don’t think there’s any other coach in the NBA that does the stuff he does."
Here's Cheeks on Sheed's transition: “I am not as surprised as most of you people are surprised because I knew some of the things that he did while he was playing and I knew some of the things that he’s shown players while he was on a team [...] I knew he had a lot of knowledge, I knew he had a lot of things that he could help a lot of players with."
With kind words like those streaming out of Pistons camp, you'd think we might see a trace of that "Super Mario Bros." ghost-evoking smile make its way across Wallace's face as he posed for his Media Day mugshot. Alas. (Maybe he just wanted to get back to work; he's seen 16 such first-day photo shoots as a player, after all, and taken some pretty solid portraits in his day, as Deadspin's Barry Petchesky notes.)
Oh, well. At least your awkward Media Day picture didn't include a black eye, Sheed. Thank heaven for small mercies.
Hat-tip to NBA.com's Lang Whitaker.