The Allen Iverson Players’ Tribune Article Delivers

Photo Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Nice surprise on a Thursday morning.

I’ll read anything I can regarding Allen Iverson, and this morning a Players’ Tribune article on AI popped up out of nowhere.

It’s called “Allen,” and features a couple of great stories, this one in particular from a road game he played at Villanova as a Georgetown standout under coach John Thompson:

There were four men, making some noise way up in the stands. And they all had on handcuffs….. and chains..…. and orange jumpsuits. Those kinds of orange jumpsuits. And I remember the sign they were holding up — clear as day. It said:


But then it had “MJ” crossed out. And they had markered in “OJ.”


Here’s what Coach Thompson, MY coach, did for me on that night: He didn’t ask for their sign to be confiscated. He didn’t yell and shout and make a scene. No. See, what Coach did is he calmly walked over to us, player by player, and told us that — don’t worry about our things — we were leaving the floor. That’s it: We were leaving the floor. No big drama. Heads held high. We were there…. and then we were gone.

And then once we were off that floor, and it was just Coach back on the court? He calmly told those refs, he said, “Hey, no disrespect. No disrespect to y’all. But here’s what’s going to happen: If you don’t get those four pieces of sh*t outta here, and I’m talking immediately — we’re gonna be forfeiting this game. Understood?”

Iverson goes on to reveal some details about himself that we might not know. He likes to draw. He’s a movie buff. The point of the article is to carry us beyond the “practice!?” quote and the Ty Lue stepover and all of the same old things that we connect to A.I.

I loved this passage explaining why he chose to dress the way he did, after the jump:

You have to understand — it’s not like there was ever a bunch of lawyers and bankers, walking around our neighborhood in custom-made suits. That’s just a fact!! No one was out here saying to themselves, When I get paid, I’m going to buy one of those skinny Armani suits. Like…. for what? What would you buy that for? Not for your job, that’s for certain — no one had those types of jobs where we were from. So yeah, maybe you get to a point where you can afford one of those suits. But it’s not changing anything, is it? It’s nothing to aspire to. I swear, best case scenario? If you handed me a nice suit, back in the day? In my mind I’d be thinking, Now I have something to wear for church every Sunday. For real!! Nah, I’m telling you right now, on my honor: that’s all a suit was to us. Suits weren’t status. They were church clothes.

So when I got to the league, it’s not like it suddenly became AI: Extreme Makeover. Why would it??? I wasn’t a changed man. “NBA me” wasn’t a new me — same-old me. I was still that same boy, Allen, from Newport News.

Sounds like Allen Iverson to me.

It’s a great read, check it out.


10 Responses

  1. Never has a guy milked so much out of one Finals win than Allen Iverson.

    Coach killer, terrible teammate, made it past the second round once in his career; treated fans like garbage, set a bad example for younger players on his team and in the league in general, pouted when he was benched and wore rival team’s apparel ON THE SIXERS’ BENCH(!), took himself out of games if he didn’t like the way it was going, ball hog, should have been sent to prison (TWICE) and now he hangs around the Wells Fargo Center like the former high school jock hanging around the gym basking in past glory and in this case begging for a front office job so he can get himself out of debt.

    I’m sure AI wrote this article as well. I can just see him sitting down at his Smith Corona typewriter with a tumbler of scotch and his fedora hung lovingly on the post of his straight back chair as he pounded the keys to tell the tale of why he wore baggy shorts on gamedays.

    Most over-rated player ever and a truly garbage human being.

    1. This is the absolute truth. Thank you. I’m sick of idiots like Kinker slobbering over this human of simmering garbage.

      1. I wouldn’t say I “slobber” over Iverson. He was Russell Westbrook back then, a guy who needed 50 shots a game and somebody who was almost impossible to build around.

        1. whenever I feel proud that national people say Philly fans are well versed and know the game (whatever game that may be) im reminded how the fans slobber over AI.

        2. Is Russell Westbrook known as a fall down alcoholic that never showed up to pre game shoot around because he was busy slamming down a 6 pack of Corona? Iverson is a democratic plantation turd in every sense of the definition. Loved in Philly because its what folks that inhabit the city look and act like and the white suburban kids Jack Off to because they think it gives them street cred.

  2. John Thompson is enabler. Little Allen coulnd’t handle the harshness of the real world.

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