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Latest News, NBA / Nov 10, 2009 / 9:00 am

Do the Right Thing: The one Allen Iverson trade that makes sense

Allen Iverson

Allow me to shed a silver lining of optimism on the Allen Iverson doomsday parade. If it’s true that the Iverson/Memphis relationship is deteriorating fast with no reunion in sight, there is one sensible solution that can take place as soon as A.I. is eligible for a trade in mid-December.

There is one trade that can work, one fan base that would accept Iverson with (somewhat) open arms, one team that could slide him right into the starting lineup AND win some games in the process, one place where Iverson can work to rebuild his reputation and maybe even have a future beyond this season.

Iverson should go back to the Sixers. Here’s the scenario:

* Philadelphia gets: Allen Iverson, Marko Jaric, Sergio Rodriguez
* Memphis gets: Willie Green, Kenny Thomas
* Sacramento gets: Sam Dalembert

The financial part works out. (Why else would Jaric and Thomas be involved?) The rebuilding Grizzlies get Thomas’ $8.7 million expiring contract going into a big free-agent summer, a backup two-guard (Green) to O.J. Mayo who actually doesn’t mind being a backup, and they rid themselves of the Iverson soap opera.

The Kings bolster their soft interior defense with Dalembert, adding height to a roster where Sean May is currently the second-string center. Sammy’s $12M salary is pretty expensive for a backup to Spencer Hawes, and he might get a little A.I.-ish after having been a starter most of his career, but it’s not like he’s leaving a great situation in Philly, where his playing time is dwindling and he doesn’t fit into Eddie Jordan‘s system anyway. As long as he feels appreciated (“You’re our defensive lynchpin, Sammy!”) and gets around 20-25 minutes a night, he’ll be fine.

Now the biggest question: Why would the Sixers want Iverson? Unlike Mike Conley in Memphis, nobody is saying Lou Williams is “the future” in Philly; he’s a 6th/7th man masquerading as a starter and he’s playing out of position at point guard. Iverson can start at the one next to Andre Iguodala at the two (who’s already accustomed to playing with Iverson), Thaddeus Young at the three, Elton Brand at the four and Jason Smith or Marreese Speights at the five. If Dalembert’s rudimentary offensive game didn’t fit in Jordan’s system, the ability of Smith/Speights to shoot, run the floor and play the high post while Brand occupies the middle is the exact opposite.

Jordan has experience working with shoot-first PG’s with a superstar complex: He guided Gilbert Arenas and the Wizards to the playoffs multiple times. Jordan also has experience working with potentially caustic locker rooms: Arenas, Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison all needed their shots in Washington, and besides that, did you see some of the clowns the Wizards saddled Jordan with?

And it’s not like Iverson was a ball-hog when he was on the court with Memphis; he was a willing passer and didn’t appear to cramp Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph or O.J.’s style, so I doubt Young, Brand and Iguodala would have a problem. And with Iverson around to take off some of the scoring load, Brand can concentrate on some of the rebounding/defense holes left vacant by Dalembert.

But, just like with the Michael Vick situation, a big factor in any team acquiring Iverson will be the public-relations/media/fan reaction element. If there’s any city that understands Iverson, it’s Philly. The fans there still love him, and a lot of them want to see A.I. retire in a Sixers uniform someday. And if he can help them win — which I think he will — it’s about as perfect a marriage as you can get out of this relationship drama.

*Follow Austin Burton on Twitter: @AustinatDIMEmag
*Follow Dime on Twitter: @DIMEMag
*Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE

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  • jnuh

    Quit trying to accomodate this a-hole.
    Let him rot.

  • Trey bing bay

    I can’t see Philly biting on that one. They’ve got too much to lose. I would love to see him go to NY, they have low expectations anyway so why not add Iverson!

  • QQ

    Stop reaching Dime. You’re reaching. Yall not just reaching, yall fucking reaching so hard. Stop it.

    Philly? No. Just fucking no. NO.

  • Reddi Red

    It actually makes sense!
    his career has been basically in Philly.
    NYC is a good 2nd option for him, but i see Philly as a good retirement home.

    Yall know Philly’s not kicking up too much dust this year so why not?

  • hahns

    haha i agree w/ qq and jnuh…dime is SO biased towards ai. the guy has turned into a bum. hes become even worse than steph. come off the bench, and shut up. yeah you have an amazing resume and have had an amazing career, but a team, especially a young team, isn’t going to forgo developing their future when they have no chance to win now in favor for an aging vet who needs 20 shots a game. it just doesnt make sense.

  • Lee

    Sorry, what are you basing the fact that Iverson was a willing passer in Memphis ??? He had 2 games after coming back from injury, then decided he isn’t coming back to the team.

  • scotsman

    i dont see why any team would want someone who has proven over and over again now that he is more interested in whining than he is in playing ball.

  • The REAL Tyrone

    Ain’t no doubt y’all that Dime don’t be knowing shit yo. Ain’t nobody in the NBA be wantin AI – cat’s nothing but an overrated, selfish punkass who ain’t worth shit yo.

    True thugs NEVER lie.
    The REAL Tyrone

  • Kobeef

    Philly has enough trouble trying to get Brand to earn his $80 Million deal and trying to make Lou Williams into a PG.

    The last thing the Sixers need is Iverson jacking up shots and dissing the young talent.

    Hey Dime, while you are at it, why don’t you try to send Shaq back to Orlando and KG back to Minnesota…just because it would be like the old days.

  • phongalong

    This might be one of the dumbest ideas ever post on Dime. I live in Philly and have been a Sixers fans since the days of Dr J. and Moses, lived through the days before AI when the Sixers wouldnt have been the Duke teams from the early 90’s. Even if the Sixers really don’t have a shot at winning anything, I would still not want AI back. He had a decent career here but, lets face it, he got lucky to get to the Finals in ’01. The Eastern conference was a joke that year and the Sixers had a bunch of scrappy defensive players willing to do whatever to help AI.

    AI would not only ruin the chemistry with his, dribble the ball for 18 seconds of the shot clock and jack a shot mentality, he would also stunt the growth of all the younger guys on the team. Getting AI might get the team a few more wins this season, but at what cost?

  • Dr.Googles

    The only deal that makes sense for iverson is to hang it up. If he couldnt prove the doubters wrong in memphis, which he fail to do what sense does it make to send him back to philly??

  • td

    im the biggest ai fan ever….but a big part of me wants him to just retire…PLEASE its painful to watch.

  • QQ

    @ 9:

    LOL. Good one, Kobeef.

    And while they’re at it, why don’t you just post some article of Kareem and Magic playing for the Lakers again one last time, for the REALLY, REALLY good old days.

  • Mark

    If New York wanted him they would have signed him in the off season!?

  • Kermit The Washington

    Sorry Dime…this deal only makes sense to you and AI. I mean the OLD AI.

    This dude is already on a young team. And already, he’s complained about coming off the bench and not winning and all that. Why on God’s green earth would ANOTHER young team make all those moves just to accommodate his ego? He’s digging his own grave; stop tryin to dig him out!

  • http://vittoriodezen.wordpress.com Vic De Zen

    I would love to see him end his career in Philly, but he really doesn’t fit in EJ’s offense. Still, it’d be damn cool.

    The real problem here is I don’t think Sacramento would want any part of Sammy D.

  • http://heckler@aol.com Heckler

    Austin–

    give it up. your reaching. too far.
    Allen Iversons career aint over. he’ll play this season and again next season. but it aint gonna be in Philly.

  • http://www.niketalk.yuku.com NTstateOFmind

    “Iverson can start at the one next to Andre Iguodala at the two (who’s already accustomed to playing with Iverson)”

    should’ve been…

    Iverson can start at the one next to Andre Iguodala at the two (who’s already accustomed to not getting the ball when playing with Iverson)

  • Rizwan

    Nice idea but A.I. has burnt his bridges at Philly and pretty mucy anywhere else now as well. I see his point of wanting to start at a bad team but he would have been in a few weeks time if he kept his mouth shut.

    Sad because he was a terrific player and probably still is but he’s unlikely to be given a chance at any other team besides Memphis.

  • maeng

    go to NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY
    NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY
    NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY
    NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY
    NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY
    NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY
    NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY NY

  • Frank

    That trade I like. The main reason: it involves Dalembert moving to another team. Lol. It makes sense when you think about it: the return of the prodigal son Allen Iverson. Not that philly would win a title but fan attendance would increase. Watching last nights game the 76ers had a lot of empty seats.

  • Jason

    Philly would do this to get rid of Dalembert. Memphis would do this to get rid of Iverson. I don’t see why the Kings do this.

  • AdvancedMind

    I think A.I should go play for the “VIRGINA VIGINA CRY BABIES”.
    Let this lame just fade away already, hes just making things so much easier for people to shit on his life..
    “PRACTICE? PRACTICE? COME ON MAN WE TALKIN BOUT PRACTICE?”
    Why would anybody want the CANCER on there team? Hes done, tell Starberry to move over so A.I can cry on camera with him. LOL

  • rban

    You can’t be serious? thats the last thing Philly needs right now…. wow.

  • hahns

    and why do ppl still think ai is a point guard again???

  • QQ

    @ 24:

    No, hahns. It’s only stupid fanboys that can’t accept the fact that their favorite player is now one fucking douche. AI will always be a pass first point guard that can make his teammates better… in their narrow little minds.

  • rban

    the sadest thing is…is there no one around AI who can tell him how terribly he comes off every single time this happens…

    I mean how can you say youre all about the team and winning… and then wine and cry about minutes…

  • Reddi Red

    listening to alot of you, you would think Philly has a shot at something….anything….this year.
    *rings bell* wake up folks, Philly has a super long way to go and Lou W is NOT your future PG. Elton Brand is NOT gonna stay healthy all season and Iggy is gonna start blowing his trade horn in a minute.

    Now that you guys are up to speed, let Philly take AI back, sell tix, and retire AI & his number.

    *Braces for replies*

  • Reddi Red

    listening to alot of you, you would think Philly has a shot at something….anything….this year.
    *rings bell* wake up folks, Philly has a super long way to go and Lou W is NOT your future PG Maybe SG, but not PG. Elton Brand is NOT gonna stay healthy all season and Iggy is gonna start blowing his -trade horn- in a minute.

    Now that you guys are up to speed, let Philly take AI back, sell tix, and retire AI & his number.

    *Braces for replies*

  • RobertGingerbreadman)

    To Be Honest I Like The Idea & Fuck All U Allen Iverson Haters. He Is Still One Of The Best Scorers In The Leauge And He Will Be In A Sixer Jersey Again. U Niggas Must Have Forgot Who Yall Talking About,This Is A Fucking Legend (ALLEN MUTHERFUCKING IVERSON). He Will Be In The Hall Of Fame And He Will Get His First Ring (Maybe) Sometime Soon,But Hall OF Fame For Sure.
    MUCH LOVE A.I. AND DON’T RETIRE U AINT NOTHING BUT 34.

  • Reddi Red

    read #28 (revision)
    and ignore #27.

    sorry for double post.

  • QQ

    So you want a team that has many problems on its own (Brand playing like shit, very weak defense, etc) to sign a player that will surely cause MORE problems? Nice logic right there.

  • KnicksFan84

    IVERSON should have been a Knick this season, PERIOD!

  • justice

    My gay uncle once told me he’s gay but that doesnt mean he has to be a faggot, this is a faggot move by a.i. nothing is given especially to a guy that was given a last chance and was kicked off a playoff team just last year, he’s a classless clown look at grant hill even steph last year playing for the celtics you gotta earn your time on the court bottom line is ur a fucking liability on defense because ur 160 and you havent figured out how to run a team at the pg spot in 13yrs and are you really that much better than oj mayo at this point?

  • Scott

    AB you are nuttier than squirrel shit … AI is an embarrassment to the game of basketball at this point … it’s a team sport and he just doesn’t get it. Keeping him in the L just reinforces to youngin’s that it’s okay to let your team down and look out for yourself first, second and third

  • BMW

    By this post’s title, I thought it would mean AI joining Spike Lee in NY….

  • life-p

    Pride comes before a downfall…That’s bible son!!

  • Smitty313

    If this was Kobe dime would murder him. But its Iverson. He’s getting a bad rap, when this is his own fault. To me it started when he said he would rather retire then come off the bench. He never is selfish to the staff at Dime. Its funny how Kobe is so selfish but he won three titles with Shaq. Its funny how Kobe is selfish but he seems to coexsist with anybody on the court. But Iverson has never had a team most of his career. Iverson never had a team because he never let them develop along side of him. Thats why Kobe passed him up in career points the other day. When Iverson is out of the league witch is sooner than we think, no one will miss him. When Kobe is gone there will be a big void in the NBA. I thought A.I. would finally grow up and change, but he’s still the same guy who crossed up Jordan.

  • JOTA JOTA

    HOW ABOUT ANOTHER WALLACE-KUPCAKE TRADE??? SASHA( THE MACHINE) VUJACIC FOR ALLEN IVERSON! SALARY WOULD MATCH AND THE ZEN MASTER WOULD PUT HIM ON HIS PLACE!!! I THINK IT WOULD WORK FOR LA!

  • atticusmitch

    A.I. is being a big baby( except he isnt throwing punches). Philly makes since because of his fan base there, and they need extra help for a real playoff push. But I think Iverson should go to Charlotte. That way he gets to play under Larry Brown, the Bobcats need scoring like A.I. needs minutes, and he gets to be the number one option again. Charlotte doesnt really have a good two guard, besides Feltmon, who really is more of a point guard anyways. Jordan should be willing to pick up A.I. because he should see the financial advantages it brings to the Bobcats by fan fair and jersey and merchandise sales. Plus an Iverson, Felton backcourt, Wallace and Diaw on the Wing with Chandler up the middle is not a bad Line up, playoff worthy…maybe not..but who knows.

  • James

    All I have to say to AI is “yo yo yo, wassup homeboy? Wassup wassup? Who yo daddy today, beeyatch? Wassup, muthafucka?”

  • control

    Dime

    Do the right thing and never mention this guy again. He’s such a cancer that you could say “Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was just diagnosed with a case of Allen Iverson” and everyone would know EXACTLY what you are talking about…guy has never been about the team, never been about winning, so he can go fuck himself.

  • http://joe.com joe

    I’m a life long sixers fan that wants no part of A.I. back in a Sixers jersey. We’re not winning the title this year, i’d rather let Sammys contract run out after next year and have some $ to play with then trade it away for an OLD A.I. who is no better then an average player at this point. That 11 million Dalembert has coming off the books next year is worth alot more then that. I’ll stick with a mediocre season, probable first round exit in the playoffs, middle round pick in the draft, and then see what happens once these guys progress and we get some money to spend in 2011 and 2012.

  • Promoman

    This article actually proves how full of shit Allen is. Accommodating this asshole is exactly why he’s got the rep he has now. Enabling him just makes him that much worse. The incident that sparked him leaving Philly in the first place is when Maurice Cheeks proposed having Iggy play point. It’s a fact that he’s a guy that has to be the center of the universe. Iverson just knows how to carry himself and how to say what you want tohear. He’s the most overrated MVP in the past 20 years and will be one of the most overrated HOFers in the history of the NBA. He makes Pete Maravich look like John Stockton.

  • Tim

    Yep…….sure wasn’t iverson who ruined Detroit

  • http://www.hot1047fm.com Steve Gomez 10a-3p on Hot 104.7fm Modesto, ca

    @ AB

    If 12 mil is too much for a back up and Sam might get all “A.I.” if he has to come off the bench why would the Kings trade for him????? Geoff Petrie is not as stupid as you seem to think he is. You propse a trade and then give 2 good reasons why the Kings shouldn’t trade for him.

  • Alee-Mo

    @Steve Gomez — But the big reason why Sacto WOULD trade for Sammy was mentioned: Their interior D sucks.

    @Promoman — It seemed to me that A.I.’s biggest problems in Philly were with Billy King, who isn’t there anymore. Like the article said, Coach Jordan has worked with Iverson-like PG’s before (Arenas) and don’t try and sell me on saying Lou Williams or Jrue Holiday is a better option at PG than Iverson.

    @Everyone else — You all are just like the rest of the media that’s been taking this chance to bash Iverson. If you watched the games he played with Memphis, he didn’t dominate the ball when he was in. He set up Rudy and OJ and Zach and those guys, and when the opportunity to score presented itself, he scored. Should he have been more patient and waited for his chance to start? Yeah. But you’re also forgetting that the official reason he left the team was some family issue. Until you know for sure that it WASN’T a family issue, stop assuming he just left because he was mad. I bet if you hear something serious with his family happened, you’ll feel pretty shitty.

  • Promoman

    @ Alee-Mo

    Neither one is better than Iverson but Philly would be better off with them than Iverson. He’ll be cool for awhile but he’ll go right back to fucking up. The only question is how long it’ll be before it does. Like I said, he’ll talk it but he’ll never walk it.

  • Scott

    @ Alee-mo … there is also a family issue and I don’t feel shitty about bashing his selfish ass at all!

    He left the team because his mental state isn’t where it needs to be because of his role with the team and his “family issue” … he needs to get over himself. If it was simply a family issue he would have attended to it and been back in the line-up for his next game.

    Athletes, just like the rest of us have “family issues” all the time … we still go to work

    Favre’s dad died and he went out and performed like an MVP the next night on MNF.

    AI is a selfish bitch and folks like yourself need to stop making excuses and enabling his diva me-first attitude

  • http://www.hot1047fm.com Steve Gomez 10a-3p on Hot 104.7fm Modesto, ca

    @ Alee-Mo

    Dalembert would improve the Kings interior defense. But would he improve it enought to justify 12 mil per?? NOOOOO! Plus the bad attitude??? No thanks. Good thing it would never happen.

  • Da_Griff

    Philly wouldn’t go for it. No chance.

  • Big Island

    Please stop with the AI stuff. Please. He was nice, had a run, but never changed his style to last longer than his skills have. Now he’s a cock. I hope that there isn’t really a “serious family matter” because you don’t wish that on anyone, but he is just an idiot now.

    If he goes to the Lakers, watch how many people start swinging from his dick again.

  • http://twitter.com/PoppiGEE POPPI GEE

    I am down with that idea. I would rather than than A.I. retire.

  • Lee

    @ Alee-mo

    If he just left Memphis for “Family reasons” why is there talk of him retireing or trades being worked out. Lots of guys have family issues and take a few games off then come back to their team. Why does AI have family issues and then he might retire ??

    Think about it ??

  • The Prodigy

    Lets give AI the props. Im pretty sure if you are in his situation you will do the same…. He´s a former MVP that can still drop 20+ points a night, way better than other starting point/shooting guard in the league.

    Those who are saying that AI is done and washed up is plain stupid. He played 3 games with Memphis and average about 12 points per game on 55% shooting without forcing shots.

  • The Prodigy

    But yeah, sad to say. I think Philly will not go for it… Theres something wrong with their marketing considering that this is a business.

    I think they should go for it for PR and marketing purposes. Anyway they don´t stand a chance in the East so why not give something that will make the fans excited…

  • layton

    The city of Philadelphia wants it but Ed Snider and Ed Stefanski do not. This will never happen.

    AI definitely isn’t at the “its so painful he should retire” point of his career. He’s still capable of being an allstar. The media makes it sound like he’s Hakeem in Toronto or Ewing in Orlando.

  • joe

    Whats crazy is that he looked good in the 3 games he’s played in Memphis. Taking (and making) good shots. Shooting 57%. Passing to the open man everytime, and pumping up the starters before tipoff getting in their face.

    He’s not perfect, but he’s not a terrible teammate either. The guy just wants playing time. Wow a veteran that wants to leave it on the court. What a crime. Most refuse to play 40+ minutes. He’s begging just for 30.

  • The Prodigy

    Couldn´t agreen with you more layton and joe…

  • kar jensen

    I like the idea of Iverson goeing back to philly. Fun fact is that this sixers team would prob be one of the best supporting casts he ever played with during his tenure there. A williams-iverson-igoudala-young-speights would be a freight train of a 5 in terms of offense.

    The one place Allen should go though, is Bobcats. Back to Larry and with a team that seems tailor made for him. He would slide right in at the 2 in their starting, and Felton-Iverson-Wallace-Diaw-Chandler seems like a pretty good iverson team too me!!At that price I would definetely roll the dice!

    Bonus, Augustin should benefit alot from watching the answer rack up points.

    They would actually have a bench with a.i on board- bell,augustin, radmanovic,

  • B-Money

    A.I COME ON OVER TO THE LAKERS!!!! WE NEED A GUARD!! AND CONTRARY TO POPULAR BELIEF!!! KOBE!! WOULD LOVE TO HAVE YOU!!! JUST IN TIME TO GET FAMILIAR WITH EACH OTHER BEFORE NEXT SEASON WHEN WADE AND LEBRON GET TOGETHER!!!

  • Gaucho09

    No way the kings do this. K9 is on his last year, no reason to prolong paying money for an old center. Kings will only trade K9 for young prospects or draft picks. Yes, their interior D sucks, but they’re rebuilding. Adding a 30 year old player wont help rebuilding one bit. Long story short, pay more money for a one and a half year rental of an old center. Kings would laugh this offer off the table.

  • JayOh

    LOL at all you fools in the comments talking about Iverson going to NY.

    1) It will never happen because the Knicks have no interest and

    2) It’d be a horrible move for them media-wise. No point in taking that risk.

  • kowtz

    This article is more of a

    “Austin Burton (Sixers Die-hard Fan) Plea”

    rather than a

    “Allen Iverson (I deserve my last chance) Plea”

    :)

  • dvs

    Send him to NY and he’ll get all the attention and playing time he wants, he won’t win any games but thats not his goal anyway.
    the guys a has-been and a selfish loser. TEAMS win championships, not individual ballhogs

  • grinch

    Brandon Jennings is the future.. AI has lost it.. he should just retire

  • aidee333

    every one stop hatein on ai please it makes u look so dumb ai needs 2 go 2 philly ………………….

  • aidee333

    fuck all u ai haters

  • emilio

    Funny i was just gonna say the same about Jennings. I mean, let’s wait and see, but 55 points, and nearly all of that in the 2nd half? What was it, 39 in the 3rd? I can’t stand the Bucks, but I am going to watch Brandon Jennings closely from yesterday on.

    Iverson yeah… I’m not a fan, don’t hate him either. I still think he can play, his problem is his head!
    But as a huuuge Lakers fan, it’s interesting to me how many people talk about him and going to LA. I actually think it’s not such a bad idea. He wouldn’t be a big factor anyway (I mean, once Gasol is back, Ron Ron is the FIFTH offensive option on that team, it’s just sick, wasn’t he the franchise player in Sacramento? But then again, who wouldn’t be, hahahaha…) Lakers could certainly use some assurance at the point guard spot for this & maybe next year. And if he still wants to complain about that bench, how’s a chapionship ring or two or three sound? He ain’t gonna get that anywhere else. Fuck the money he’s rich anyway, besides that it’s LA, just watch Ron Ron getting his share of opportunities… And I don’t see this scenario as a risk either, I’m sure Phil Jackson knows all the tricks he needs and WOULD shut him up if necesary.

    But all that said, I would advise Allen Iverson to retire. Why? Because either it’s that championship scenario (It won’t happen) or it’s be hired to sell tickets and jerseys. And let’s be honest; who wants to break a leg for that purpose?

    All in all, I wish AI the best and I hope he works his shit out before it’s really too late. He needs a better publicist by the way.

  • http://cynthiaalford16@yahoo.com cindea55

    I would love to see AI back in Philly. That is where he belongs he should have never left. The only reason why I dont see it happening is because AI’s pride wont allow it. Im tired of everyone talking bad about him. He can be a starter on any team he is still ballin so ppl need to stop hatin.

  • scoob

    ALL YOU MORONS THAT HATED ON AI ABOVE ME…WHAT NOW!!!

    AI IS BACK!!!