NBA

Allen Iverson formally announces his retirement

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Allen Iverson hasn't played in an NBA game since the 2009-10 season but it wasn't until October 30 that Allen Iverson formally announced his retirement.

Iverson is one of the greatest small men to ever compete in the NBA. His ball handles were crazy and his vertical leap was unbelievable. He was a great shooter and a great leader.

On October 30 the Philadelphia 76ers were set to take on LeBron James and the Miami Heat. But before that game, something with more sentimental value had to take place.

Former MVP, Allen Iverson, was set to formally announce his retirement. He was dressed in all black and a gold chain. He also had a hat on, backwards of course.

Iverson sat at his press conference and what he showed was what he has shown for the last 20 years. A man. Nothing else, no regrets and no apologies.

Iverson said "no regrets" more than once and all the times he said it he had a special kind of emphasis. Even though he wasn't proud of everything he did, he had no regrets.

Throughout Iverson's farewell speech he thanked all his coaches, from high school all the way to the pros (Mike Bailey, Thompson and Larry Brown) and he also thanked NBA legend Michael Jordan for "giving me the vision".

AI went on to thank his teammates, choking up when he spoke about Aaron Mckie - one of his teammates in his 2001 MVP year. He also had some jokes, saying he had "broken every bone in my body," when thanking the trainers.

He also thanked his family saying "I cheated my kids out of love a lot, as far as being a father" when he was playing. He ended by thanking journalist, Phil Jasner. He thanked him for his support and also for his sparring, saying he wished Jasner could be present to cover this.

Iverson had something about him during his career - and he said he didn't care what people thought about him. Listening to him during his press conference and it was hard not to think that he still is an original.

"I had no problem with people misunderstanding who I was to be me," Iverson said. "When I looked in the mirror, I wanted to be the same person that I was. I didn't leave out of my house and then turn into somebody else.

"I wanted to be me, I wanted to be the same person that my kids knew. I didn't want never to go home to Virginia and look at my me, like who is this guy? I always felt like it was cool being me. I thought that was the style. I think that's the style. Being me. Being who I am.

"I had no problem with that. I mean, it rubbed people the wrong way, because they didn't accept it the way I wanted them to, but I didn't care. Because I felt like I wasn't doing anything wrong, being who I am."

Iverson said this was a "happy day" not a "tragic day". AI finished by saying: "I'm happy with the decision I'm making, and it was a great ride."

Allen Iverson was a great player. According to LeBron James, he was pound for pound the greatest player. He gave us spectacular moments and poured his heart in to everything he did.

The best part for me about his press conference was when he said this.

"It's a great one. I wouldn't trade it for nothing, I have no regrets on anything. People ask me all the time, do I have any regrets? And I don't have any. If I could go back and do it all over again, would I change anything? No. Because obviously if I could go back and change everything, then I would be a perfect man.

"And I know there's no perfect man."

Allen Iverson isn't a perfect man, but he is a man. He's a man with a lot of heart and this press conference was a great last chapter to end his career.

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Topics:
Philadelphia Sixers
NBA

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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