Despite scoring nearly 25,000 points and leading an under-manned team to the 2001 NBA Finals, Allen Iverson will always be defined by the events of May 7, 2002.
Mere days after getting bounced out of the playoffs by the Boston Celtics, Iverson gave a rambling, 35-minute, expletive-filled press conference, highlighted by the repeated use of the word "practice." Iverson had been frequently criticized in the media by not having the most diligent practice habits, and everything suddenly came to a head.
"It was just being young and definitely immature. I wish it wouldn't have ever happened," said Iverson, reflecting back on that day. "But you learn from experiences like that... I think it sent the wrong message, especially to kids. You can't be a scoring champion and an MVP and an All-Star and all of that without practice."
More than nine years later, Iverson's now-infamous "We talkin' about practice" sound bite remains a pop culture staple, referenced recently by athletes (Green Bay Packers' quarterback Aaron Rodgers) and non-athletes (actor Charlie Sheen) alike.