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Out Of Bounds

Real sports insight that non-sports fans can understand.

Archive for March, 2010

UPDATE! Allen Iverson’s daughter is the least of his worries.

Monday, March 8th, 2010

So just last week, I posted how I had found a new respect for Allen Iverson for leaving the game he loves to take care of his ill 4-year-old daughter. Well, the Philadelphia Inquirer’s own Stephen A. Smith reports that Iverson isn’t just leaving basketball for his daughter, but to take care of some other slightly more important personal matters. Mainly that his wife (and high school sweetheart) filed for divorce March 5th, custody of their five children, alimony and child support; and he’s apparently dealing with serious alcohol and gambling problems that will cause him to “either drink himself into oblivion or gamble his life away.”

Smith says that this comes from “numerous NBA sources.” So this begs the question, are any of these “sources,” or anybody else for that matter, attempting to help him, or is everyone standing back waiting to pounce on the impending story like the Britney Spears meltdown?  Look, Allen, if you need help and need to get away, you can come stay with me and my family. Seriously. Post a comment or email me. Somebody needs to help him. Stephen A. Smith suggested Iverson’s coach at Georgetown, John Thompson needs to step up and help out.

My suggestion: The NBA needs to use this as a learning tool for incoming rookies to show how the ride doesn’t last forever. If you don’t take care of the millions of dollars and instant fame that are thrown at you, you’ll end up alcoholic and in serious debt…like Vin Baker. As for Iverson, taking the time away from basketball is the least of his worries, but the first step in a postive direction. Take this time to piece your life back together. Do it for your kids. Do it for you. Do it so the tabloids don’t rip you to shreds. Just get better. Because nobody deserves to go down in a Britney Spears paparazzi-fueled blaze of glory.

New Respect for Allen Iverson

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

I have always thought of Allen Iverson as one of the most self-centered basketball players ever to put on a uniform. In 2002, he complained about practice to the point that it became one of the ten most watched sports videos of the last decade. When he was traded from the Denver Nuggets to the Detroit Pistons straight up for Chauncey Billups, the Nuggets got better because they received a team player. The Pistons received an over-inflated ego, who couldn’t come to terms with his increasingly fragile body. He said he’d rather retire than come off the bench when he was with the Detroit Pistons, even though he clearly was a shell of his former self.  Then he retired after a very brief stint with the Memphis Grizzlies, only to come back one week later with his original team, the Philadelphia 76ers.

Now, my thoughts of Allen Iverson have changed drastically. He has been out of commision for about a month, not because of an injury, but to take care of his ailing 4-year-old daughter. How often do you hear of a sports star (especially one who is known to think only of himself) taking the needs of his family over his own? Answer: Almost never.

I can only think of one other instance where this was the case. Los Angeles Laker forward Derek Fisher (then playing for the Utah Jazz) missed half a playoff game (and a lot of practice time) to be with his daughter as she received treatments on a tumor in her eye. Then he was amicably let out of his contract so he could sign with the Lakers, almost solely so his daughter could get the care she needed without flying all over the country.

So Mr. Iverson, you’ve finally grown up. You probably didn’t need the $650,000 you were slated to get this year anyway, but it is admirable that despite coming out of retirement to continue your basketball dream, you’d be willing to sacrifice that for the sake of your daughter. Congrats Allen. Welcome to adulthood.