Allen Iverson. One Of The Greatest To Never Win a Ring, On Purpose.

Isaac FerminContributor IJuly 10, 2009

CLEVELAND - FEBRUARY 22: Allen Iverson #1 of the Detroit Pistons looks on from the bench during a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on February 22, 2009 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland won the game 99-78. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

When it's all said and done. Allen Iverson will go down in NBA History, as one of the greatest players to ever play the game. Unfortunately, he might go down on the list of greatest players to never win a championship. But unlike Patrick Ewing, Charles Barkley, Dominique Wilkins, Elgin Baylor, Reggie Miller, Pete Maravich, John Stockton, and Karl Malone.

He has a choice. What I mean is that he has a choice to go to a lottery team and be the main guy or go to a contender (or at least almost there) and probably come off the bench. Although Allen has said "he rather retire than come off the bench."
I hear there are two teams who want his services; Memphis and Miami.

Note that these two teams have something in common... They're not championship contenders! Miami is a horrible idea, because there's a 90 percent chance he will come off the bench in a sense of realism. If he were to play along side Dwayne Wade at the same time, it would be like Denver all over again, because both these players need touches. Although Dwayne Wade can be a better facilitator than Iverson if we're talking stat-wise.

Another problem we'd be facing is the development of Mario Chalmers. If things go Iverson's way, Chalmers would come off the bench and who knows how he'll develop like that. But it's very likely Iverson would come off the bench eventually or maybe from the start because I think if they want to win they can't have A.I. and D-Wade on the floor at the same time because one scorer is enough at a time. Because they would prefer Chalmers to develop than Iverson just getting what he wants because Iverson has officially passed his prime at 34 and isn't the same player he was when he won his MVP.

Memphis is just as bad or worse, whichever way you look at it. Memphis doesn't really need Iverson, because that front court is full. Here's the projected starting lineup.

C- Hasheem Thabeet

PF- Zach Randolph

SF- Rudy Gay

SG- O.J. Mayo

PG- Michael Conley

Now on paper, this is a very good starting lineup and having Marc Gasol, Hakim Warrick, and Darrell Arthur coming off the bench. That looks like a very talented team but they can't win because they're young and inexperienced. Iverson can help them by giving them talent and experience but if Memphis is serious about Iverson and Iverson is serious about not coming off the bench, one of two players has to come off the bench.

So pick, Mike Conley or O.J. Mayo. Mike Conley would obviously be the one to come off the bench, but like I said with Miami you can't have Iverson play with O.J. Mayo, Zach Randolph, and Rudy Gay at the same time because they need touches.

For Memphis, the most logical thing to do is make Iverson come off the bench. But you know this is not a real problem because Memphis has nothing to lose in this deal, it's Iverson who should make Memphis happy. The Grizzlies have been losing and losing badly and adding two guys with "interesting" personality's in Iverson and Randolph wouldn't hurt them, besides how can they get worse. But Iverson is not going to get a ring with that team or that attitude.

Out of the teams that are contending, there are different reasons they can't sign him. Because they can't offer him the mid-level, they don't need him, or because they can only make him come off the bench, or all of the above.

Lakers—The Lakers already used their Mid-Level on Ron-Ron and can only offer the Bi-Annual at the most, and you know Artest is enough to handle with Phil. Last year one of my friends told me he would love to see Iverson at the point... If Iverson was to be the starting point-guard of the Lakers, it wouldn't work because he plays too much one on one even when he plays like a point-guard and to share the court with Kobe who again I said needs a lot of touches, it just wouldn't work that way. He would come off the bench, but the bench is already full and if the Lakers needed a bench player they would need a center. Iverson does not play center so forget that. Overall the Lakers don't need him at all, And the Laker nation will agree with me that we don't want him.

Celtics—My favorite team in the world (Me using sarcasm) already used their Mid-Level on 'Sheed, so again Boston can only offer the Bi-Annual at the most. Boston doesn't need Iverson in their starting back court because both Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo are both better players, so again we go back to the bench and again they don't need him in the bench because they have Eddie House who plays the same, shoot first. So forget about Boston, and I think Celtic fans would for once agree with me, that they don't want him contaminating their team with his bad attitude.

Spurs—They have the same issue with the previously mentioned teams; No Mid-Level, no starting spot, no bench need, and no desire from fans.

Cavaliers—Okay now this team is a little different. They have a Mid-Level and a starting spot. The bad news is that they don't really need him unless he comes off the bench, which you know he doesn't want. Iverson's style of play won't work either with LeBron since he's not a spot up shooter. But it could work since LeBron is a great passer and Shaq will be in the post in which the diesel is a good passer from there. So it looks good on paper though, I don't know how it will work on the court. I also don't know the opinion of Cavs fans on Iverson going to their team.

Here are the teams that could use him as a starter but are not contending.

Bulls—After Ben Gordon left to Detroit, Chicago needs a replacement for him, and that guy would be Iverson. Although they've signed ex-Bull Jannero Pargo, Iverson would be a good addition.

Knicks—It is very likely Robinson will leave the Knicks and Iverson can be that guy they should get, but New York is more busy trying get Grant Hill, so the chances of this happening is slim.

Bobcats—I know, but it does make some sense because of this. the Bobcats have the Mid-Level, Larry Brown knows Iverson and can handle him, and the the Bobcats need a legit scorer. So this is a very good place for him.

Timberwolves—One thing... They need a scorer who can take the pressure off of Al Jefferson since they gave that up for Kevin Love. No disrespect to Love but they needed Mayo more than him. Because in reality they needed a scoring gaurd than a big man, and if they needed a big man (which they do), they would need a 7-foot Center.

If Iverson wants a championship, he has to accept a smaller role and probably come off the bench. I think Iverson would accept coming off the bench for this reason. Remember when he came back from that injury and had to come off the bench, he played 18 minutes and went 5-8 with 11 points. I think Iverson is saying he won't come off the bench because of that game. Because he thinks he will only play 18 minutes or less and doesn't think he'll get 25-30 plus minutes like a usual sixth-man does.

Look, whatever the reason may be. If he doesn't fix that attitude, I guarantee you that he will go down in history as one of the greatest players to never win a ring. You hear most players in their prime or a bit past their prime that they want to go somewhere else to win and would give up their individual greatness to get a ring. Iverson is doing the opposite and that's a shame because he was such a great player.


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