Just look at the photo from this press conference today, announcing Allen Iverson official signing a two-year deal with Besiktas Cola Turka in the Turkish league. (via Iverson’s site)
Does anyone look happy?
Iverson said he was happy to go, he has the chance now to be a basketball ambassador to the world. He’ll make $4 million in two years (he can opt out after one). The owners of Besiktas have to be thrilled as Iverson will be a draw, they should make money. This will be a big boost for the Turkish league, landing the first American real star to head overseas.
However, like Larry Brown and others had said, it’s sad to see it end up this way.
Iverson was an American basketball icon, but never one you pictured as an ambassador of the game. He was an MVP and the only offensive option — and enough of one — on a 2001 Sixers team that went to the finals. And he did it with his own style. The exaggerated crossover. The hip-hop style. He brought the game to the street. He was exciting to watch.
But he got older and could not adjust his game to the game anymore. And he was unwilling in Denver and Memphis and Philadelphia to fit in. He wouldn’t be the designated scorer off the bench, which is where his game is.
So he’s in Turkey. And this could be good for everyone. He could be a basketball ambassador.
If Iverson accepts the role this time.