30 NBA players who were traded before becoming stars

Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady
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21. Richard Hamilton

Former NBA all-star Richard Hamilton was acquired by the Pistons in a deal that sent star Jerry Stackhouse to Washington. While Hamilton was the centerpiece of the deal for Detroit, many didn't foresee him becoming a key player on one of the most dominant teams of the 2000s. As a member of the Pistons, Hamilton made four all-star teams and led the team in scoring over their three best seasons from 2006 to 2009.

Although he wasn't as prolific a scorer as most all-star wings of his era, Hamilton's skillset as a player who could get open by running around a series of screens for mid-range shots helped Detroit score effectively in the halfcourt. It might not have always been pretty, but "Rip" buoyed the Pistons' slow-paced offense, allowing their defense led by Ben Wallace to wreak havoc. 

During their five-year run near the top of the Eastern Conference, the Pistons frequently held teams under 90 points, which would be unheard of now, with Hamilton ensuring that they'd win their rock fights with a steady stream of jumpers. Perhaps Hamilton wouldn't have had the same success in Washington, but as a member of the Pistons, he was key to a championship team.