Detroit Pistons: Called for Travelling, 1982

Dawn is breaking over another airport runway. The Pistons, on their way back to Detroit, have been up since 5:30 a.m., and they straggle down the nearly deserted corridor leading to their gate, suit bags slung over their shoulders, a duffel bag in one hand and a newspaper in the other.

Kelly Tripucka: Two Crazy Nights in January 1983

“Hey, it has to come from the heart,” Tripucka said, poking himself in the chest. “If you can’t be excited about a game like this, if it doesn’t give you any kind of thrill, you’ve got absolutely no business in the game.”

Isiah Thomas: Is He the Pistons’ Savior? 1982

“He has charisma, an ability to inspire confidence in his teammates that only a few players have like Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, or Julius Erving,” says Rod Thorn, the Chicago Bulls’ general manager.

Bill Laimbeer: Not Supposed to Be This Good, 1984

“Part of my success is that I anticipate shots well. On offense, for instance, I know my teammates. I know that when a guy is in a certain area, I can count on him shooting and can adjust my position accordingly. I also watch the ball.”