Allen Iverson, Former NBA MVP to RetireBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
Allen Iverson, 11-time All-Star, former Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year, has decided to officially retire from the National Basketball Association this week. After the retirement, Iverson hopes to channel all his energy toward his business holdings and children.
Iverson, the 38-year-old controversial player, has not played in the NBA since the 2009-10 season. His last professional game was with a team in Turkey in 2011.
Talking about the game's influence on his personal and professional life, Iverson said last spring, "It enabled me - and it has enabled me - to take care of my family. It brought me so many fans and people that love me. I met so many great people. And it made me, whether I like it or not, a role model. It built me up, it knocked me down, it taught me how to get back up. It did a lot for me."
Iverson was considered to be one of the best shooting guards in the league for several years. He was known for his incredible dedication and competitive spirit. He is also credited for not missing games because of injury and playing during severe health issues.
"He might be the greatest athlete I've ever seen," said Larry Brown, Iverson's coach from 1997-2003 with the 76ers. "I don't think there'll be another one like him."
Experts believe that his NBA career never really took off the way it should have even though he had an overseas stint in Turkey.
Off court, Iverson will be remembered for his stubborn behavior, refusing to practice with the 76ers and to develop his natural skills for the game. Although he earned more than $150 million dollars during his playing days, he is believed to be broke today due to his spending habits. His financial struggles surfaced during divorce filings in December.
Iverson, a former No. 1 overall pick out of Georgetown, rejected an opportunity to make a comeback in the NBA Development League. He also turned down lucrative deals in China.
During his 14-year tenure, the 6'0 and 165 pounds' player played for the Denver Nuggets, Memphis Grizzlies, Detroit Pistons and the Philadelphia 76ers.
AI ended his career averaging 26.7 points, 6.2 assists and 2.2 steals. He played in 71 career postseason games and made an appearance in the NBA Finals once.
Iverson was a three-time All-NBA First-Team selection and a four-time scoring champion.