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No more The Answer

Allen Iverson was the most dominant 6 foot player to ever play the game. At times, hes competitive nature got the best of him but many times that same drive made us all appreciate his style as his moves made us cover our mouths. He took the cross-over dribble to another level. “We talking about practice” remarks brought him negative attention, however he became the first rookie in history to score 40 points or more in four consecutive games. When the game was on the line AI was, “The Answer” .

Allen Iverson announced his retirement to Stephen A. Smith earlier in the day and we’ll discuss the legacy that A.I. leaves behind.

Stephen A. Smith just announced on ESPN that Allen Iverson had informed him of his upcoming retirement and we’ll discuss the career of A.I. before making our personal call on whether this was the right time for the scorer to hang them up.

It appeared earlier in the week that the New York Knicks were going to sign Allen Iverson but after it was announced that New York has no interest it appears that the retirement process is ready to begin.  Iverson will end his career as the 5th all-time leader in points scored per game at 27.1.  Allen also won the MVP award in the 2000-2001 season in which he lead his Philadelphia 76ers into the NBA Finals where they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers.

This seems like a perfect time for Allen Iverson to finally make the retirement jump despite the fact that he still has some gas left in the tank.  Teams want to use him in a reserve roll but Iverson believes he still deserves to be a starter and he’s apparently just not happy coming off the bench of help a team in that fashion.

Iverson is an excellent scorer but he’s never been the type of player that helps teams win championships and has shown he’s more interested in his personal statistics than anything else.  He’d love to have won an NBA championship before his retirement but the fact that he’s been unwilling to play a reserve roll or help his teammates in practice seems to indicate that he hasn’t figured out all the nuances of being a team player.

AI is one of the most misunderstood figures in sport. I appreciate his passion and love for the game, which you don’t see in all players. He sacrificed his body every game and played with so much heart. I hate to see him walk away so prematurely but I believe he’ll be back. Whatever criticism people have about AI, no one can say he doesn’t love the game.

It’s sad that Allen Iverson was forced into retirement when he still has tread left on the tires but many GMs are wising up and realizing that it is not in the team’s best interest to give minutes to me-first players like this.

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