‘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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The NBA’s Best Draft Class of All-Time Is…

Lebron James was selected first overall by the Cavaliers  in 2003.

Lebron James was selected first overall by the Cavaliers in 2003.

With the NBA Draft just over 24 hours away, teams are preparing to make selections that can forever change the fortunes of their franchise. With each selection a team faces the possibilities of landing a potential superstar who may one day bring the ultimate prize to their team, a solid contributor who may fill a role or a complete dud who will never pan out in the NBA.

Each pick carries its own risk and all 30 teams will have to face this reality on Thursday night. Over the years, certain drafts have been easier to navigate because the talent pool was incredibly deep. This fosters that argument of which draft class was the best of all-time.

There are three classes that stand above the rest but which one reigns supreme?

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Sixers’ Drafts: What If?

The Sixers lineup could include some potential all-stars if the team had drafted differently over the years.

The Sixers lineup could include some potential all-stars if the team had drafted differently over the years.

Hindsight is of course 20-20 and it is impossible to go back an re-do the past. For Sixers fans, it would certainly be nice to be able to do so when you consider what possible decisions could have been made with the franchise.

With the 2013 NBA Draft coming next month, it is only natural to look back on some past drafts of the Sixers. When doing so, it is interesting to see some of the players the Sixers took a pass on.

Here is a look at one potential starting line-up that the Sixers could have out on the floor if they selected a little differently.

  • PG Jrue Holiday Drafted 17th overall 2009 by Sixers
  • SG Paul George Drafted 2nd overall 2010 by Sixers (Sixers actually picked Evan Turner)
  • SF Wilson Chandler 21st overall in 2007 by Sixers (Sixers actually selected Daequan Cook and traded for Jason Smith)
  • PF Serge Ibaka Drafted 16th overall 2008 by Sixers (Sixers actually picked Marreese Speights)
  • C Marc Gasol Drafted 38th overall 2007 by Sixers (Sixers actually picked Kyrylo Fesenko)
  • Bench: SF/PF Thaddeus Young 12th in 2007, PF/C Carl Landry 30th in 2007 (Sixers actually selected Petteri Koponen and traded for Derrick Byars)

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Andre I”GOLD”ala: Sixers’ Forward Makes Team USA

The 2012 USA Basketball Men’s National Team was annnounced on July 7th in Las Vegas.

Team USA Basketball was announced last night and one of the finalists to make the team was Andre Iguodala. The Sixers forward was a starter on the 2010 USA Team that brought home the gold at the World Championships in Istanbul, Turkey. Despite this distinction, Iguodala was far from a shoe in to make the 2012 team. Iguodala was one of five players (James Harden, Anthony Davis, Eric Gordon, Rudy Gay) battling for the final two spots on the roster. Last night his name was called (See Video) and now A.I. will be heading to London.

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Philadelphia Sports Writers Association Dinner

This past Monday, The Philadelphia Sports Writers Association held their 107th Annual Award Dinner at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cherry Hill, NJ. The event featured numerous awards handed out by the PSWA to deserving individuals from both the worlds of college and professional sports. Honorees included 76ers F Elton Brand (Good Guy Award), Phillies Ace Roy Halladay (Sportsperson of the Year), Phillies CF Shane Victorino (Humanitarian Award) and Ian Laperriere accepting the Best Team award on behalf of the Flyers. Also in attendance was Phillies GM Ruben Amaro. The evening also included honorees from Lasalle, Temple, Philadelphia University, University of Pennsylvania and other colleges in the area.

The night had many admirable awards including Matt Hoffman of Rowan University who won an award for saving the life of a young child by donating bone marrow to the young man. Hoffman’s story resonated with many in attendance and Hoffman’s achievements were spoken about numerous times including during Charlie Manuel’s speech when he talked about how honored he was to have met Matt Hoffman. Another amazing award was handed out to Mark Herzlich who took home the Most Courageous Athlete Award for overcoming cancer to eventually return to play his final season at Boston College. Herzlich said that battling cancer was not courageous in his eyes because he had to do it, otherwise he would not have made it.

The night also had many lighthearted moments. The funniest speaker of the night was certainly a toss-up between Phillies Skipper Charlie Manuel and Comedian Joe Conklin. Both took to the stage with the intent to make people laugh and both succeeded. Manuel ironically referred to himself as the “best speaker” of the night which brought the crowd to a rousing laugh. Conklin utilized his trademark impressions which included Charlie Manuel, Cole Hamels, Dan Baker, Merrill Reese, Mike Quick, Andy Reid, Bill Bergey, and Allen Iverson. Both did a wonderful job of entertaining the crowd.

Just as a side note to this article. I have to thank the PSWA for awarding me the Richie Ashburn Scholarship, which was the reason that I was in attendance Monday night. It was truly an honor to receive an award that contains the name of one of the most legendary figures in the history of Philadelphia Sports. I once again want to thank the PSWA and the Ashburn family for this honor.