Allen Iverson: The Best Move He's Ever Made?

Ray StoneCorrespondent IMarch 8, 2009

I want to hear some Allen Iverson critics come out and praise the man. 

He deserves it!

Here is a guy that the media has constantly scrutinized throughout his career. 

Iverson eventually won over the fans and media alike with his fearless play on the basketball court. But he had to earn it the hard way.

Rough Start

He had been labeled everything from a thug to a gangster. When all along—Iverson was just being himself. 

“Stereotypes of the “black” male misunderstood, but it’s still all good.”  - Biggie

The reason he has such a cult following is because he helped erase the line between ‘us’ and ‘them.’  The average fan in an NBA arena did not understand a young kid from the hood like Allen Iverson. 

Neither did the media.

They don’t understand the company he kept. The way he dressed. Any incident off the court involving Iverson was big news.      

On the other hand the average brother in the hood could relate to Iverson immediately.  He dressed just like we did!  He talked with the same slang that we do.

He was us! 

That empowers us as a people. A little kid with a big heart and braids in the ghetto could suddenly see himself on television. That gives those children more to dream about at night. 

It expands their possibilities. 

He eventually won over the NBA fans and in doing so enlightened our whole nation. 

He showed us all that its nothing wrong with kids with baggie pants, braids, earrings, and tattoos. That’s nothing’s just different.  

That is just the culture that we grew up in as the hip-hop generation. 

That is nothing to look down upon or stereotype. People are just people. Iverson is a husband, a father, and he puts his pants on one leg at a time just like the rest of us—no matter how baggie they may be. 

Allen Iverson, in many ways, is like the Jackie Robinson of the NBA. 

He had strong enough character to not change who he is to be accepted.  He showed a generation how to do that. 

That is why you see braids, tattoos, arm slings, and swagger all over the NBA today.  You didn’t have that before Iverson.

He’s done some immature things throughout his career.  Some basketball related, some not.  But he truly gives 110% when he laces up.  He will be first ballot Hall of Fame player easily.

Going to the bench for the good of the team is amazing for a player of his caliber! 

To put it in perspective: Do you think Michael Jordan would have ever consider coming off of the bench at this stage of his career?  

Or how about my favorite player Isiah Thomas? 

LOL. Hell no! NEVER!

I wouldn’t blame them either. I didn’t think Iverson would do it either. 

I had already written an article explaining him for riding the back injury into free agency. I thought he would sit out and start fresh next year with a new team. 

I could have understood that decision.

It surprised me that he stated that he was willing to come off of the bench for Detroit.  I was shocked.  And proud.

Anything Allen has ever done that could be viewed as selfish or unprofessional always gets major press. Ball hog. Me first. Practice. All of that has been well documented on him.  

This nonsense “story” about him hosting a party in Atlanta while he’s injured is a perfect example. Who really cares about that? Honestly. 

Only Iverson has to deal with that kind of scrutiny. 

They try to make up controversies for him.

They won’t focus on his maturity though. Allen making a team-first decision doesn’t make as good a story apparently.

Sacrificing for the team and putting ego aside like this, just how classy is that? That takes tremendous character!  How about some more reports on that topic?

You know that even at age 33, Iverson feels he is capable of being the same superstar he has always been. He is a very accomplished player in this league. He could go Terrell Owens and cause problems for the Pistons quickly. 

Yet he chose the high road.

In this contract, ego driven world of professional sports, the league should be emphasizing this kind of class. Especially coming from one of the games biggest and most controversial stars. 

That is a great story.

The media has a chance to really accentuate the way this guy has matured over the years. Iverson accepting the bench for the Pistons shows the ultimate class and professionalism. 

Where’s the love?

If he misses a “practice,” its all over the news.  Now he is honoring his commitment to do whatever it takes to help his team win, it should be a leading story too!     

Good news just isn’t news. 

Especially when it’s The Answer in question. 

(He is one of us indeed.)


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