Former Piston GM 'Trader Jack' McCloskey Dies at 91

McCloskey hired Chuck Daly as the Pistons' coach in 1983, and Daly went on to post Detroit records for regular-season wins (467) and playoff wins (71) in a Hall of Fame career. He was honored by the club in 2008 with a ceremony placing his name in the rafters of The Palace.

Jack McCloskey, a former Delaware County resident and the man recognized as the architect of the Detroit Pistons' "Bad Boys" championship teams, died Thursday in Savannah, Ga.

McCloskey had been suffering from Alzheimer's in recent years. Thomas' backcourt mate and fellow Hall of Famers Joe Dumars 18th overall in 1985 and Dennis Rodman in the second round in 1986. His teams made nine straight playoff appearances, five consecutive trips to the Conference Finals, and three Finals appearances.

Nicknamed "Trader Jack" for the deals he made that turned the Pistons into an National Basketball Association powerhouse, McCloskey was the Pistons general manager from 1979-92.

Though he was battling Alzheimer's disease, McCloskey's wife said he still had fond memories of the Pistons teams he built while at a memory care facility, per the Detroit Free Press. Trader Jack made moves to acquire Bill Laimbeer from Cleveland, Rick Mahorn from the Bullets, James Edwards from Phoenix, Vinnie Johnson from Seattle and Mark Aguirre from Dallas. He served as head basketball coach at Penn from 1956 to 1966. After serving as an assistant coach to Jerry West and the Los Angeles Lakers, he became head coach of the Pistons in 1979.

  • Julie Sanders