“With the first pick in the 1996 NBA Draft, the Philadelphia 76ers select Allen Iverson from Georgetown University.” These words spoken by then NBA Commissioner David Stern were just the beginning of Iverson’s Hall of Fame career. Iverson entered the NBA and showed that he belonged there. Iverson won Rookie of the Year averaging 23.5 ppg, 7.5 apg and putting on a show of highlights every single game. One of Iverson’s most memorable moments came during his rookie season when the 76ers took on the Chicago Bulls and Iverson shook Jordan out his expensive shoes with one of his infamous left-to-right crossovers.
Iverson was known for handles that would leave opponents stuck in space trying to figure out what just happened. By the time they figured it out, Iverson would already be at the basket scoring the rock. Iverson was known for his quick and flashy play that would have the crowd on their feet every game. In 2001, Iverson single handily carried the 76ers to the NBA Finals for the first time since 1983.
Iverson was elected into the Hall of Fame this year after 14 seasons in the NBA. Iverson had a career average of 26.7 ppg, 6.2 apg, and 2.2 spg Iverson was an NBA MVP, 11-time All-Star, seven-time All-NBA team selection, four-time scoring champion, and led the league in steals three times.
While Iverson had a great career, there are some moments his friends, family, teammates, coaches, and especially fans would like to forget about the Hall of Famer.
15. The Bowling Alley Altercation
As a teenager, Allen Iverson was a star player in both basketball and football for Bethel High School in Virginia. In 1993, on Valentine’s Day at the Hampton’s Center Lanes bowling alley, Iverson and some friends got involved in a brawl with another group that involved chairs being thrown. There have been different reasons for why the brawl started. Iverson along with his friends claimed a white man used a racial epithet, while the white man said Iverson provoked him. Iverson was eventually charged as an adult, although he was 17, to 15 years in prison. Iverson was released after just four months and the appeals court overturned the conviction due to insufficient evidence.
14. Iverson’s Bodyguard Costs Him
In 2005, Iverson’s bodyguard Jason Kane was accused of assaulting a man, Marlin Godfrey, at a nightclub in Washington D.C. Godfrey refused to leave a VIP section that was assigned to Iverson and his entourage. Following the altercation, Godfrey had a concussion, ruptured eardrum, a burst blood vessel in his eye, a torn rotator cuff, cuts, bruises, and emotional distress. During this incident, Iverson did not lay a finger on Godfrey, but Godfrey sued Iverson for what his bodyguard did. In 2007, Godfrey was awarded $260,000, which was upheld by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 2009. This incident just added to a bad reputation that Iverson already had.
13. Iverson’s Attempted Rap Career
Although Iverson was a great basketball player in the NBA, that wasn’t enough, so he took a shot at a rap career. Iverson laid down a track entitled “40 Bars,” but gained a lot of criticism for its lyrics about killing and guns so he never released it. Iverson, or Jewelz (his rap name), was set to release an album but activist groups and NBA Commissioner at the time David Stern did not like his lyrics towards homosexuals. Due to more criticism, Iverson never got to release the album. The worst part about all this is that Iverson was actually pretty good at rapping, but many never got to hear his music.
12. Too Fast, Too Furious
After a successful rookie season that saw him win Rookie of the Year honors, Allen Iverson ran into his first public encounter with the law while in the NBA. Iverson was pulled over for going 93 mph in a 65 mph zone. The strange part about this story is that, despite the fact that it was Iverson’s car, he was not driving at the time. However, while they were pulled over, the police searched the car and found marijuana and a loaded pistol in the vehicle. Iverson took the plea bargain, which required him to serve 100 hours of community service and submit to two years of drug testing. This was not a good start to Iverson’s professional career, despite his stellar play on the court.
11. Unhappy Wife, Unhappy Life
Allen Iverson got into a argument with then wife Tawanna Turner, causing him to kick her out of his home while she was butt naked. That was not the end of the night as Iverson went to look for his wife at his cousin’s apartment. Iverson had a gun on him, which he allegedly pulled out to enter the apartment. Iverson was later arrested and charged with three felonies, which were trespassing, gun counts, and criminal conspiracy. He also was charged with six misdemeanor counts, including simple assault, false imprisonment, and making terroristic threats. Despite all of this, all the charges were eventually dropped.
10. Iverson Divorces His Wife and is Embarrassed in Court
After 10 years of marriage and five kids together, Allen Iverson divorced Tawana Turner. In 2012, at a divorce proceeding in Atlanta, Iverson yelled out to Turner, “I don’t even have money for a cheeseburger.” Turner’s response was handing over $61 to Iverson in front of everybody inside of the courtroom. The couple reached a buyout in 2013 of $3 million. This is a situation that not only fans of Iverson would like to forget, but the Hall of Famer himself as well.
9. Golden State Warriors at Philadelphia 76ers, March 8, 2005
The Philadelphia 76ers came into this game against the 18-41 Golden State Warriors, trying to bounce back from a loss in their previous game. The 76ers led by Iverson were fighting for a playoff spot and needed this win against a team that was not that good. Not only did the 76ers get blown out but the Warriors 104-85, but Iverson had one of his worst games ever with 12 turnovers. To make matters worse, Iverson shot 10-25 from the field, although he still managed to finish with 33 points.
8. Iverson’s First Departure from the 76ers
After 10 seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers to start his career, fans’ worst nightmare came true when Iverson went to the Denver Nuggets during the middle of the 2006-07 season. Once Iverson left the 76ers, they did not win a playoff game for the next five seasons. Iverson, on the other hand, helped the Denver Nuggets to the Western Conference Finals in 2004 for the first time since 1985, although the Los Angeles Lakers stopped Iverson from getting an NBA Championship… again.
7. Feud With 76ers Head Coach Larry Brown
Allen Iverson and former 76ers head coach Larry Brown had one of the biggest love-hate relationships in NBA history. Brown would sometimes get so mad on the bench at Iverson that you could see veins popping out of his head. Iverson and Brown had many disagreements on and off the court. At one point, the 76ers tried to trade their franchise player in the offseason of 2000 to the Detroit Pistons, but 76ers big man Matt Geiger, who was included in the trade, refused to give up his $3,3 million trade kicker. Iverson and Brown squashed their beef and actually took the 76ers all the way to the NBA Finals. They are now in a good place and remain close. Recently in the news, Brown has talked about the possibility Iverson being the head coach of the current 76ers team.
6. The Infamous Practice Incident
One of Iverson’s most memorable moments occured when a reporter asked him about missing practice, but come to think about it he had a great point. Who really talks to players in a interview about missing practice? The fact that this was a really big deal shows that Iverson had a reason to be mad. In today’s game, players are rested and nobody has problems with that. If LeBron James or Stephen Curry missed a practice, the media probably wouldn’t even know about it.
5. The End of His Career
After seeing Allen Iverson put players on the floor with his crossover and drive to the basket with strength, the end of his career was sad for Iverson fans to watch. After leaving the Detroit Pistons in 2009 and playing for the Memphis Grizzlies/Philadelphia 76ers, for what ended up being his last season, Iverson was not the same player. In that season, Iverson only averaged 13.8 ppg and 4 apg, showing that his time in the NBA was just about over.
4. Being Broke Rumors/Facts?
After his NBA career was over, there were many rumors going around that Allen Iverson was flat broke, although Iverson had denied the allegations numerous times. Reports even surfaced that said Iverson blew $155 million. Following that, Iverson had a court date for his divorce with former wife Tawanna where he claimed he didn’t have enough money for a cheeseburger. Iverson then reportedly stole jewelry and lost his house and had to stay in a hotel. On top of that, Iverson was accused of kidnapping his own children after a custody dispute with Tawana. In a interview last year, Iverson responded to the broke rumors by saying, “That’s a myth. That’s a rumor.”
3. Iverson’s Last Game
Many did not know it at the time, but on February 20th, 2010, in a battle between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Chicago Bulls, Iverson would play his last NBA game. Iverson finished the game with 13 points and three assists in 29 minutes. Iverson only played in 28 games that season due to personal health matters involving his daughter. Following that season, Iverson signed a two-year, $4 million contract with a team in Turkey.
2. Iverson and 76ers Lose to Lakers in NBA Finals
The 2000-01 NBA season was the best of Allen Iverson’s career. Iverson averaged 31.1 ppg, 4.6 apg, 3.8 rpg, and 2.5 spg to earn his first ever NBA MVP Award. Iverson also led the 76ers to a 56-26 record, which was the best in the Eastern Conference and tied for second best in the entire league. In the postseason, Iverson showed why he was the MVP by averaging 32.9 ppg while carrying the 76ers all the way to the NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers had the same record as the 76ers and owned the tie breaker, giving them home court advantage. In the first game, Iverson dropped 48 points to upset the Lakers and take game one. However, Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal took over and won four straight games to beat the 76ers 4-1 and crush Iverson’s dreams. To make matters worse, Iverson never made it back to the NBA Finals.
1. Iverson Announces Official Retirement from NBA
On October 30th, 2013, Allen Iverson officially retired from playing basketball. With players such as Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Vince Carter, and Tim Duncan still playing today, Iverson fans still had hope that he would come back to the NBA one day. Even the great Michael Jordan played at age 40. Although Iverson retiring was a sad moment for fans, Iverson was elected into the Pro Basketball Hall of Fame this year, along with one of the men that put him out of the Finals, Shaquille O’Neal.
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