‘The Answer’ Finally Ready to Call it a Career

*This post also appears on TheWooderCooler.com

“We sittin’ in here, I suppose to be the franchise player, we in here talkin’ about practice. I mean listen, we talkin’ about practice. Not a game, not a game, not a game…WE TALKIN’ ABOUT PRACTICE.” -Allen Iverson, 2002

Photo Courtesy of ESPN.com.

Photo Courtesy of ESPN.com.

That particular line has lived on in Philadelphia sports lore for the last 11 years and at the time no one expected a typical end of the year press conference to produce a line that still to this day is used by a number of people.

That was the power that Allen Iverson had. He took the ordinary and made it unforgettable. On that day he showed it at the podium, but he displayed that same skill on the basketball court every night.

On October 30th, the Sixers will take on the Miami Heat in their season opener. ESPN’s Chris Broussard reported that on that night, Allen Iverson will officially announce his retirement from the NBA. Iverson, 38, has not played in the NBA in 3 years and the former MVP seems ready to come to grips with the fact that he never will again.

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Changing of the Guard in Philadelphia: Charlie Manuel Out

It was announced today that Charlie Manuel is out as the manager of the Phillies.

It was announced today that Charlie Manuel is out as the manager of the Phillies.

Charlie Manuel is out as the manager of the Philadelphia Phillies. Manuel managed almost nine seasons in Philadelphia and set a franchise record for wins. He coached the team to five consecutive division titles and two World Series appearances with one win.

Manuel and General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr are characterizing this as an understanding from both sides.

Regardless of the circumstances, Manuel will never again wear his #41 Phillies jersey at Citizen’s Bank Park.

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Phillies Ink Chase Utley to a Two-Year Extension

Chase Utley is batting .277 this season for the Phillies.

Chase Utley is batting .277 this season for the Phillies.

When the July trade deadline rolled around for Major League Baseball, Chase Utley was one of the many names people expected the Phillies to dangle. Those speculations did not come to fruition as General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. characterized Utley as a “Phillie for life.”

CSNPhilly first reported that the two sides had agreed to a contract extension last night during the Phillies lost to the Cubs. Utley did not start in that game. Reportedly the two sides agreed upon a two year extension worth around $27 million with at least one option.

The move shows the organization’s commitment to Utley, but it undoubtedly comes with some risks.

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Eagles Should Part Ways With Riley Cooper

Riley Cooper issued an apology immediately following the release of a video showing his usage of a racial slur.

Riley Cooper issued an apology immediately following the release of a video showing his usage of a racial slur.

The last week has been a daunting one for Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper. On Wednesday, video surfaced of Cooper attending a Kenny Chesney concert at Lincoln Financial Field in which he used the N-word in an aggressive manner toward an African-American Lincoln Financial Field security guard.

Since the video release via CrossingBroad, Cooper’s life has completely changed.

After numerous statements and apologies, Cooper was excused from team activities last Friday and has not been with the team since. He is seeking professional help and the team has stated that no timetable for his return has been set.

When and if Cooper returns is what everyone is looking out for. The Eagles would serve themselves, the players and the fans well to let Cooper go.

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Is Donovan McNabb a Hall of Famer?

Donovan McNabb officially retired as an Eagle yesterday.

Donovan McNabb officially retired as an Eagle yesterday.

Yesterday at the NovaCare Complex, Donovan McNabb officially retired from the NFL as a Philadelphia Eagles. The announcement was made in front of a packed auditorium filled with former Eagles, current Eagles, media and organizational figures. The celebration of McNabb’s career in Philadelphia will culminate in September when his #5 jersey will be retired as the Eagles take on Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs.

The retirement news has spawned the debate of whether or not McNabb deserves a place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. There are indeed a number of categories that voters take into consideration including numbers, success and ultimately championships.

McNabb shines in some of these categories and lacks in others, but is the whole body of work deserving of a bust in Canton?

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Papelbon ‘Didn’t Come Here for This’

Could Jonathan Papelbon's second season in Philadelphia be his last?

Could Jonathan Papelbon’s second season in Philadelphia be his last?

On Sunday before the Phillies 12-4 loss to the Detroit Tigers, closer Jonathan Papelbon sat down Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. Papelbon is undeniably one of Philadelphia’s more outspoken athletes and despite his short time with the team, he does not seem shy about making his opinions known.

Papelbon told Zolecki that he “definitely didn’t come here for this,” in response to the team’s recent play.

The comments come as the team is in the midst of anĀ  8-game losing streak that may signal the end of the team’s postseason hopes for 2013.

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Why PED Culture in Baseball Will Never Change

Ryan Braun denied any wrongdoing in connection to PED's.

Ryan Braun denied any wrongdoing in connection to PED’s.

Steroid use in professional baseball has been a hot button issue for the bulk of the last 15 years. The recent suspension of Brewers’ outfielder, Ryan Braun, has ramped up the discussion even more. It is safe to say that Braun’s suspension will be followed by more as several players including Alex Rodriguez, Nelson Cruz, Gio Gonzalez and Bartolo Colon are facing suspicion as well.

Links to the Biogenesis Clinic in Florida make it all but a certainty that these players will face penalties that will impact their teams and their wallets as well.

Major League Baseball is working quickly and diligently to get these players punished, evident through the fact that Braun’s 65 game suspension for the remainder of this season was reached in conjunction with the league. However, Major League Baseball is beginning to fight a battle with no clear end in sight.

You can continue to punish individuals who violate your drug policy after the fact, but how do you change the overall PED culture in baseball? If the presence of these punishments have not cleaned the game up in a significant way, what will?

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Eagles Training Camp Set to Begin

Chip Kelly will begin his first training camp with the Eagles today.

Chip Kelly will begin his first training camp with the Eagles today.

Today marks the official start of the first Eagles training camp under new head coach Chip Kelly. The first year NFL coach has decided to move the camp from Lehigh University to the Novacare Complex here in Philadelphia.

Select practices will be open to the public and held at Lincoln Financial Field.

That will not be the only change from the Andy Reid era. There will be a lot of new sights and sounds to look out for this year. There will be new drills, tempo, players, schemes, strategies and positional battles that will make this training camp quite unique.

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The Zimmerman Verdict: What Philly Sports Figures Had to Say

George Zimmerman was found not guilty on charges of 2nd degree murder and manslaughter in the death of Trayvon Martin.

George Zimmerman was found not guilty on charges of 2nd degree murder and manslaughter in the death of Trayvon Martin.

If you were on Twitter or Facebook last night, you were most likely reading tweets and statuses dealing with the second extra inning game that the Phillies were playing that day.

The subject matter quickly changed as it was announced that a verdict had been reached in the controversial George Zimmerman trial.

After 17 months of scrutiny and speculation, George Zimmerman was acquitted on all charges stemming from the admitted slaying of 17 year old Florida native, Trayvon Martin.

Like many of us, Philadelphia Sports athletes and media members made their opinions of the verdict known on their social media accounts throughout the night. Some issued numerous and very deliberate tweets while others were much more discrete.

Here is a look at what several people had to say:

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Hold or Fold for the Phillies?

Can Ruben Amaro Jr. swing a deal to get the Phillies in contention?

Can Ruben Amaro Jr. swing a deal to get the Phillies in contention?

It is just under three weeks until the MLB non-waiver trade deadline and rumors are swirling all around the Phillies’ clubhouse. With the team currently sitting at 45-47, it is hard to definitively peg them as buyers or sellers at this point.

Should a team that appears to have a quickly closing window blow things up now, or try to search for the missing piece(s) that could give them one more run at a World Series title?

That question will soon be answered because it is safe to say that after July 31, this Phillies roster should look somewhat different.

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