NBA Rumors: 10 Teams That Could Use Allen Iverson Next Season
Since Allen Iverson's personal manager Garry Moore announced that Allen would be making a comeback for next season many people are wondering who would sign him. Garry said Allen really wants to play and is working out to prepare himself for next season. It isn't hard to believe because Allen is one of the most competitive players in history and there is no way he wants to leave the game like this. But believe it or not Allen may have a easier time finding a team this year then last year.
He did leave Memphis after just three games because he wasn't starting and wasn't getting the minutes he felt he deserved. People always bash him for that but they don't know how frustrating it was for him, he came off a season in which he was misused by the Detroit Pistons and almost lost his career so he was on a mission to prove people wrong. He understood that he had gotten older and was going to have to train for the first time in his career and he did that. When he got to Memphis even after a hamstring injury in training camp you could tell that Allen had got that explosiveness back, he was quick off the dribble, his jumper was wet and in his second game he scored 18 points and has 6 assists in just 27 minutes of action. But the problem was all that hard work he did was being wasted because he was playing 18 mpg and there was no way he was going to prove the doubters that said he was finished wrong by coming off the bench and playing 18 minutes a night. Allen Iverson came into Memphis in amazing shape and had the abilities to have another 27 ppg and 6 apg season, he could have lead that team to the playoffs but the Coaches and GM's thought differently. It was then that Allen decided he wasn't going to go through another season of hell, so he left the team.
It must have been hard for Allen to leave and as bad as he wanted to play and prove people wrong he was now free to do whatever he wanted. Imagine the excessive partying, gambling and drinking Allen did after he left Memphis, he must have stayed home all day eating what he wanted when he wanted. He said he was working on getting fat, but then Louis Williams got injured and Allen was going back home to Philadelphia, it was so ironic how he ended up back in Philly. The fans loved it, he loved it and Philadelphia loved it, the "Answer" was coming back home. But little did they know he was returning after a month of not playing basketball, it was a month of freedom for Allen and he was not healthy, he was not conditioned for once Allen Iverson was not ready. Had he come to Philly in the start of the season then Allen would have had a great season and lead that team to the playoffs but returning after a month off was not going to work and this wasn't just any month off it was a Allen Iverson month off. Allen came back to the Sixers in very bad shape, he had gained some fat and you could tell, that explains the knee arthritis he had a few weeks into the season.
Worst of all Allen was playing in Eddie Jordan's Princeton offense, this is a offense where you pass the ball, cut down set a screen, wait for a screen and then maybe get the ball. The entire Sixers squad didn't fit in with this offense and if there is one player in NBA history that doesn't fit in a Princeton offense it is Allen Iverson. You could tell he hated playing in that offense but he could not complain because he was on a non guaranteed contract and his career was on the line, forget proving that he could still play at an elite level, Allen had to prove that he can fit into a team without being a distraction. He got caught up in doing that, he was hurt and he was playing the type of basketball he never had played in his life, he was playing a career low 30 mpg and taking a career low 11 shots per night.
These are the reasons his stats were so low but he did prove that he can fit into a team concept without being a distraction. But Allen had to leave the team in February because his daughter was ill and many people doubted this, I don't see why people wouldn't doubt that because I am pretty sure if Allen was getting his shots, touches and minutes he would not leave the team. Allen was just hurting his amazing career averages by playing and the Sixers weren't even winning, so he again decided to leave.
Then it got worse, Allen's wife filed for divorce the day he asked to leave the Sixers. A week later Stephen A. Smith reported Iverson had drinking and gambling problems. If teams weren't already scared to sign him now they certainly were. Everyone thought Allen was gone for good but now he is announcing that he will return next season.
Chances are Allen is going to have the hardest working off season off his career and will be more focused then ever, he still wants to prove the critiques wrong. Just like Kobe Bryant is planning on doing so this off season Iverson will have to heel all his injuries before anything. Allen will have to get his three point shot back, he will need to get the explosiveness and strength back in his legs, he will need to work on his mid- range jumper, he will have to get back to the shape he was in when he was in Denver and he will have to work hard to do it. Many people question Iverson's work ethic but he can prove a lot of people wrong next season if he stays dedicated and focused.
A healthy Allen Iverson can get 25 ppg and 7 apg for any team, but he will need to be in the right situation where he is being treated fairly by the coaches. He will need his touches and his shots (at least 16-18 a night), he still has the abilities to be one of the leading scorers in the league and lead a team to the playoffs.
Allen may end up some where this season because the entire league is going to change after this years free agency, a lot of roster spots will open up and a lot of teams will need certain players. Allen wants to win a championship, he wants to start and he wants at least 35 mpg so here are the 10 teams that could use Allen Iverson, all these teams would be good situations for him:
10.) Dallas Mavericks
Allen would get to start on this team, because Jason Terry is the 6th man and has been for a long time now. He would have a very good shot at winning a title with Dallas if Dirk decides to resign. Rumor is that the Mavericks are interested in Shaq, so just imagine this lineup: Jason Kidd, Allen Iverson, Caron Butler, Dirk Nowitzki, Shaquille O'Neal. 2011 Champions.
Allen could really help the Spurs, Ginobli would play 6th man and Iverson would get his 35 mpg because George Hill can also play shooting guard and Allen would get to move to the point guard spot when Ginobli is on the floor. Allen could help the Spurs win a title, Coach Popavich would be able to control Iverson and Allen would not cause problems because he has a lot of respect for Tim Duncan and knows that Duncan has done more then he has in the league. If the Spurs let Iverson play freely some nights he the Spurs could really make a run at the title next season.
Imagine a Allen Iverson and Kobe Bryant back court. The Lakers could really use Iverson if Derek Fisher decides to retire, Iverson could play the point guard spot and for the first time would playing with someone who has accomplished more(Kobe Bryant). Even if Fisher stays, if the Lakers could give Iverson 33 mpg as a 6th man he would probably accept. Ron Artest and Allen Iverson on the same team would be scary but if there is one coach that can control Allen Iverson right now it is Phil Jackson.
Last season Iverson was very very close to becoming a Bobcat, Larry Brown had agreed to bring him in, Allen had agreed to sign the deal but then Michael Jordan pulled out last minute because he was afraid Allen would have a negative influence on the young roster. Maybe Mike had a change of heart for Allen, this would be a great situation and Allen could help this team get to the second round. He would play the 1 spot and Stephen Jackson would play the 2 spot, when Jackson is sitting Iverson could also play the 2 and DJ Augustine could play the 1 spot. Iverson would be reunited with Coach Brown and he is the one coach that was able to control Iverson and bring out the best in him, this would only work if Raymond Felton decides to leave.
6.) Miami Heat
Weather Dwyane Wade stays or leaves Allen Iverson in Miami would be a good fit. If Wade stays that probably means Chris Bosh, Carlos Boozer or Amare Stoudemire have signed with the heat(LeBron will not go to Miami). If Wade stays Allen could play the 1 spot and Wade, Iverson and whichever PF signs could form a Big 3 that could win the East. Although D-Wade hasn't accomplished more then Iverson has in his career, Allen knows that at this point D-Wade is a better player then he is and he would have no problem taking a back seat. If Wade doesn't stay, then Iverson could still play because he could become the 2 guard, sell tickets and jerseys and maybe with a little more help lead the Heat to a 8th seed.
5.) Atlanta Hawks
Joe Johnson is probably not going to return to the Hawks next season, he will be asking for a lot of money and the Hawks don't have that money. Iverson could become the new starting 2 guard in Atlanta because Jamal Crawford is the 6th man and he had the best season of his career as a 6th man. Jamal and Allen could each play 35 mpg and even be on the floor at the same time. The Hawks finished as a 3rd seed last year and were swept by the Magic in the second round, they are going to need a go to guy and Allen would be a great fit. Iverson also lives in Atlanta so there is a good chance this could happened.
4.) Toronto Raptors
I think it is safe to say the Chris Bosh is done with Toronto. He will probably sign where ever LeBron or Wade go and the Raptors will become irrelevant. Hedo Turkoglu is already demanding a trade so the Raptors will have no go to guy, no face for their franchise, it will be a nasty year for Toronto if they don't make a big move and whats bigger then bringing in one of the 20-25 greatest players of all time, one of the 5 greatest scorers of all-time and arguably the biggest cultural icon in NBA history. Allen Iverson could save the Toronto Raptors, he could bring the excitement that Vince brought to Toronto, even with Bosh the Raptors didn't have that big name player and Allen would become the face of the franchise, he would obviously start and should get around 38 mpg. He could average 26 a night with this team and be free to play however he wants. The Canadians would love Allen's style of play, his effort and competitiveness would be admired. With some help Allen could even lead this team to the playoffs.
3.) Philadelphia Sixers
Iverson should resign with the Sixers, it just doesn't seem right if he decides not to, Ed Stefanski said if he had the chance to re sign him he would do it in a second because Allen didn't cause any problems this season and fit in well despite being injured. It is awkward because when Allen returned in December he was supposed to finish his career as a Sixer and if he doesn't return to Philly that means he played 10 seasons there, got traded and came back after 3 years, played 25 games, then left again, that just looks nasty. Iverson's number 1 choice should be Philadelphia. Even if they draft Evan Turner then Allen should be the starting point guard ahead of Louis Williams, since Eddie Jordan is fired there will be no more Princeton offense and Doug Collins will probably have this team playing the way they should. Iverson, Turner, Igoudala, Brand and Hawes could do some big things in the Eastern Conference.
If LeBron decides to stay in Cleveland just like the Miami situation that would mean Chris Bosh or even Wade himself have signed with Cleveland. Just like Wade even though LeBron hasn't accomplished the things Iverson has in the league, Iverson would still be ready to take a back seat because he knows at this point James is a better player. LeBron, Iverson and the third big name free agent could form a big three and win a title. Iverson would never choke like Mo Williams and Delonte West have in the playoffs the last couple of years and could put in 20 and 6 a night on this team while winning a title. If LeBron doesn't stay in Cleveland then the Cavaliers should still sign Iverson because he will keep the buzz alive, he will give them a go to guy and could prevent them from becoming irrelevant.
1.) New York Knicks
Before announcing his retirement last year The Knicks were about to sign Iverson till James Dolan backed out last minute like Michael Jordan did with the fear that Allen would stunt the youth development. This year the Knicks will for sure land one of the big name free agents, it is being reported that LeBron James is leaning towards the New York Knicks so that would mean Bosh or Wade are also going to sign with the Knicks. Just like the Cavs or Heat the Knicks could form a Big 3 with LeBron, Bosh and Iverson which would probably be the best team in the league. Iverson would start get his 35 minutes a night and we could see a 22 ppg, 8 apg Allen Iverson in Mike D'Antoni's system playing alongside LeBron, he would also accept the back seat to James. This is the perfect scenario.
So there it is the 10 best fits for Allen Iverson, he could really help teams next season and he could do it while getting what he wants and giving the team what they want. It will be an interesting off season for Allen Iverson but it will probably be a better one then last season, if Iverson actually trains this off season and gets his body healthy then he truly can be the "Answer" for a lot of teams next season.
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