NBA Rumors: Allen Iverson Is the Answer for Los Angeles Lakers' Title Hopes

Peter EmerickSenior Writer IIFebruary 12, 2012

ESPN's Stephen A. Smith is reporting that there's some interest in veteran NBA guard Allen Iverson coming out of the Los Angeles Lakers' front office.

CBS Sports is also reporting, though, that Iverson is engaged in talks with Puerto Rico's professional basketball league to take his talents down south.

While no one aside from Iverson and his business manager, Gary Moore, know exactly where he is going to end up playing basketball this year, one thing is for sure: Allen Iverson is the missing piece of a Lakers 2012 NBA Title run.

The Los Angeles Lakers aren't having the year that many thought they would, currently sitting at 16-12 overall, which includes an abysmal 5-10 record on the road.

One of the main reasons why the Lakers are struggling this year is the lack of offensive depth coming off their weak bench.  When the ball isn't in Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum or Pau Gasol's hands, there's a high likelihood that the Lakers are going to struggle to score points.  And that's exactly what Allen Iverson could change.

I know Iverson isn't the 30-plus points per game guard that he once was, but there's no doubt that he's a better scorer than almost everyone coming off the Lakers' bench.

Even at the age of 36, Iverson is still a better offensive talent than guys like Derek Fisher, Steve Blake, Jason Kapono and Andrew Goudelock.  All of those guys combined average 19.2 points per game.  And, while Iverson wouldn't average that kind of offensive production, he wouldn't be too far away.

In his last season in the NBA, with the 76ers during the 2009-10 season, Iverson averaged 13.9 points in 31.9 minutes per game.  If Iverson was able to score 13.9 points per game in limited time with the Lakers, that would be a vast improvement over the production Kobe and company are getting now from the Lakers' underwhelming bench.

Without Lamar Odom this season, the Lakers are struggling to find offensive production aside from their big three, which is why they haven't been able to close out and win close games.

The Lakers' fate won't change if they aren't able to add a veteran scorer like Allen Iverson who's ready to fit into whatever role a team needs of him.

While there have been rumors about Gilbert Arenas landing in Los Angeles, the Lakers would be smart to stay away from him. The last thing the Lakers need to do is to sign a guy who doesn't understand what a "good shot" looks like.

I know Iverson could be knocked for being a questionable shooter at times, but he's already admitted that he's ready to fit into into a system in whatever role a team needs of him.

The Lakers need Allen Iverson nearly as much as Allen Iverson needs the Lakers.  Teaming up with Kobe could be Iverson's final chance at obtaining the NBA Championship that eluded him throughout his career.

If the Lakers want to win, they need to sign Allen Iverson. And they need to do it sooner than later.

Iverson is without a doubt the answer that the Lakers are looking for. And if they want to be legitimate contender in the Western Conference they need Iverson in a No. 3 Lakers jersey before the All-Star break on Feb. 24th.

Do you think Iverson is the answer to the Lakers' offensive woes?  Let your thoughts be known in the comment section below.

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