Saturday morning, a piece of Detroit history came crashing down as part of a planned procedure. The Palace of Auburn Hills, the former home of the Detroit Pistons, was imploded in moments. The structure was a shell of its former self after being gutted over the years, but 800 pounds of explosives finished the job.
The Palace of Auburn Hills was no longer necessary considering that the Pistons previously moved locations. The team left the suburbs and headed downtown to the shiny, new Little Caesars Arena. This location has served as the home of the Pistons since 2017 as the Pistons have struggled to find success. The team has achieved records of 39-43, 41-41 and 20-46 in three seasons at Little Caesars Arena.
Watch: The Palace of Auburn Hills imposion
The former home of the Pistons stands no more pic.twitter.com/aWuaKkEBqG— Brad Galli (@BradGalli) July 11, 2020
The Palace at Auburn Hills originally opened in 1988 and drew attention for huge moments, both good and bad. This was the site of Dennis Rodman's near-suicide in 1993, as well as two consecutive NBA Titles in the arena's first two years of existence. The Palace at Auburn Hills also served as the home of the dominant Pistons team that won the third title in 2004.
One of the most controversial nights in the arena's history took place on Nov. 19, 2004. The Malice at the Palace, as it became known, was an altercation that took place during a game between the Detroit Pistons and Indiana Pacers. The incident first occurred when Pistons' player Ron Artest fouled Ben Wallace from behind. The Pacers star responded by shoving Artest. The benches emptied and both teams took part in a massive brawl.
Once this incident ended, Artest laid down on the scorer's table. A fan threw a drink at him from the stands, and he responded by charging the fan and starting another brawl. Players and spectators alike took part in the fight, which lasted several minutes. The NBA later suspended nine players. Another five faced assault charges while five fans faced criminal charges and lifetime bans from Pistons games.
In addition to the success in the NBA, the Palace at Auburn Hills also served as the home of the WNBA's Detroit Shock. This team won three titles (2003, 2006, 2008) prior to departing for Tulsa and later Dallas. Neither team has experienced much success since leaving the longtime Detroit arena.
The Palace at Auburn Hills also became the home of professional wrestling during the 1990s. WWF used the arena for three pay-per-view events, including Summerslam on Aug. 30, 1993. WWF stopped using the arena due to WCW moving events there. The chief competitor of WWF sold out the building three times, including two separate World War III pay-per-view events.