Allen Iverson gets a sizable offer from a soccer team
NBA legend Allen Iverson is in the middle of considerable financial disaster right now, currently holding such little cash that a judge has ordered his wages garnished to pay back a jewelry debt of more than $850,000. The guy needs money as fast as possible, and for Iverson that means getting a basketball job. Yahoo!'s own Adrian Wojnarowski reported two weeks ago that Iverson has an offer to play in Puerto Rico, and Chris Broussard of ESPN.com cites sources claiming he'd spend some time in the D-League if it meant a chance at an NBA job.
Iverson is clearly looking for an answer (pardon the pun) to both his financial woes and diminished standing in the sporting world. And while desperate times call for desperate measures, some offers are just too ridiculous to consider. For instance, an indoor soccer club has now extended a not-insubstantial offer to Iverson. Here's the official press release from the Rochester Lancers (via EOB):
The Rochester Lancers, of the MISL's top level of pro indoor soccer, today announced a contract offer to former NBA star, Allen Iverson.
The Rochester Lancers host two remaining regular season home games to conclude their season. The offer stands at $20,000 per game, with a bonus of $5,000 per goal scored, win bonuses, and merchandise bonuses. There are over 12 goals scored on average per game.
"Allen Iverson is one of the premier athletes of our time," said Rich Randall, Vice President of the Rochester Lancers. "With his athleticism and competitive hunger, I think he can be a great fit with our team and fans as we make an important playoff push, while also driving interest to an exciting, growing sport."
If accepted, the Lancers have also offered to host his friends and family through the duration of his stay. With the per-game pay and bonuses, this offer will come close to the offer (per game) set by Turkish basketball team, Besiktas and ultimately keeping him the United States.
It's hard not to be a little curious about Iverson as a soccer player. For years, observers have speculated that, based on his elite quickness and toughness, he could have been one of the best soccer players of all time if he'd devoted himself to it from birth in the manner of athletes in other parts of the world.
Still, let's call this offer what it is: a publicity grab by a team in a minor sports league looking to get as much attention as possible. There's no way they can expect Iverson to take this deal. Disregard all the talk about helping Iverson stay in the United States or hosting his friends — the Lancers are exploiting a great athlete's name recognition and dire circumstances in the hope of getting some extra money.
Iverson is far from a perfect person, and any consideration of his financial situation has to accept that he frittered away more than $150 million in salary (and more in endorsements) over the course of his NBA career. Yet there's a difference between giving a thorough explanation for why someone's in trouble and reveling in that misfortune. Love him or hate him, Iverson is one of the most important athletes of the past 25 years. It's genuinely sad to see someone who once held so much sway over the NBA reduced to a punchline. It's fine not to feel compassion for him. But, at the very least, please don't treat him like an object of derision. He deserves better than that.
AI could be good at a fast paced sport like that.. He has the perfect size for a soccer player and more than enough speed and quickness.. I hope he tries it out. Actually, I want him back in the NBA and playing as a "true point guard" but I doubt that ever happens.
He should of PRACTICED saving his money.... alright i forgot
dude, iverson is the reason i got into basketball... leave it to a 6 footer to take on kobe and shaq.. one of the best inspirations of my life..
In any other business, if one of your top executives missed a meeting, the result would be . . . nothing. Because rich important members of a business are treated with respect. Halfway through an NBA season, how much do you think teams really accomplish during a lot of practices? It would be like your top salesman in a company, not missing a sales call, but instead missing a meeting run by the IT department on the new email system. You wouldn't be calling your salesman out in public because of that.
In sports, the athletes are still sometimes treated like kids by their coaches. That is partly because the players are pretty young, but partly there is a real lack of respect and some irrational rules. Iverson is totally right that six or seven years into an Hall of Fame career, missing 1 o4 2 out of 100 practices during a season is really not worth talking about. Does the media think the coaches were going to teach him some new basketball skill or strategy in that practice which they hadn't done during the years of practice before and couldn't do during the years ahead? Iverson gave it all on game day and yeah, you really can't tell me that every single practice during the 80+ game season is all that important for a hall of famer to attend.
Seriously, the professional coaches carry over a lot of there procedures from high school and college level coaching. At that level, they are still teaching the sport. If I were a nearly 30 multi-millionair hall of famer, I'd sometimes find some of that stuff insulting as well. And I certainly wouldn't consider every practice crucial for the teams success.
He'd be a fool not to take this lol. It sounds gimmicky, but still. He's broke and this is easy money
I wonder if his mom blew all her money too?
This would be better than when Manute Bol played hockey.
Idk where my comment came off as saying iverson was a bad player because he certainly wasnt, probably one of the most exciting player in the nba at one point. But sorry if i show no pity in athletes or any person in general famous or not for going in debt for spending on useless luxeries such as 850,000 on bling. People work hard for their money, and its normal to splurge every now and then but it still comes as a shock to me when these people go into debt, there are exemptions of course of things you cant control. Iverson should accept this deal as jnixon said or he'll just like antoine walker except a much better player
Tallman, I gotta disagree with you. Ok, I'll agree with one part - does a guy like AI need to practice all the time? No. But you know who does? The 10th, 11, 12th guys on his bench. Or any player that doesnt have a fat long term contract and is just trying to stay in the league. They need every practice and every advantage they can get in order to keep playing. And those are his teammates, guys he should be helping 'cause they're the guys he goes into battle with. You don't think they benefit from practicing with one of the best players in the world? Or how about a rookie that's only made the league on his raw athletic ability? A guy like that can sure use all the time with AI he can get.
Not showing up for practice is a slap in the face to all the guys who do show up, unquestioned and by their own accord to every practice. AI's actions showed a lack of respect to every other member of that team.
As for your corporate analogy, the big difference is that that executive that misses some meeting, probably still put in 50 + hours of work that week. A ball player is asked, at most, for somewhere between 15-20 hours of required work in a given week ( not to mention has three months off every year and will only have to work for 10-15 years and should still be set for life). If you can't be bothered to meet such a minimal requirement then you end up exactly where AI did - out of the league long before you should have been and contemplating taking joke money to play in one of the worst pro sports leagues on the planet as a gimmick.
If you think basketball players are putting in 15 to 20 hours per week, then you haven't a clue. They generally do a practice in the morning and then a game at nice. The practice is at least an hour but you have to get changed and taped up and your are supposed to be early to it and frankly it is nice if you don't bolt right after it. So call it two hours. It is longer if there is no game that night. There is probably 15 hours per week right there and we haven't even gotten to the games or lifting weights. During the game (and there are three to five games per week), they get to the arena two hours before game time to start the process of getting ready. They have half an hour to an hour after the game between showering and answering questions from the media. There is travel time to the practice facility, then back home then later in the day to the game then, often enough, straight to the airport to get on a flight for an away game.
Certainly professional athletes don't have a hard job in terms of time commitment. But they spend many times more than 15 to 20 hours per week.
I strongly suspect that some of these "practices" were game day shoot arounds where the players put up some shots and they discuss defense and that night's opponent. Good stuff and I'd be surprised if AI didn't make it ontime to 95% of the practices in his career.
Also it is certainly not his job to train the bad players on his team that his fairly poor front office has decided to give contracts to. Sure he should do his thing. But if AI needs a bit more rest two or three times a season and the third string point guard would learn something about being blown by off the dribble, well I don't think 3rd string take precedence.
A. Bossy is right.
B. Stuff like this is why the guy who wanted to take up a collection for AI is completely absurd. He's got better career prospects now than 99% of us.
He's not going to be good. I don't know how anyone would try to look at this other than being a publicity stunt. You people know soccer takes a lot of durability to play right? I doubt Iverson is in the best shape of his life....
AI who is 6th on the All Time NBA PPG list has so quickly gone out of favour, he never really got an offer from a contender to go and be a role player and I never once heard of any superstar suggesting their team tries to get AI. It has been said that he'd probably rather start and get 15 to 20ppg on a struggling team than try to chase a ring from the bench or as a role player on a contender.
With Charlotte struggling so much for scoring I wondered if MJ might try to get AI in there, it would createsome interest if nothing else andmaybe AI could help Kemba to improve his game.
An NBA player missing practice is NOT like an executive missing a meeting w/the IT people. It's like an executive missing a routine meeting for executives, led by the CEO. Sure, if you're a highly valued executive, you can get away with it once in a while. But if you start showing the wrong attitude about missing it and stop feeling the need to have a good excuse for the rare times you do miss, you're going to lose favor with your fellow executives, the CEO and the board of directors. Before long you're likely to be fired.
This situation happens all the time in corporate America and frequently in sports. People get prideful and start believing their above the law and irreplaceable. And when that happens they usually get fired. Bye Bye Al! I loved to watch you play. I wish you were a more complete human.
The game day morning shoot around does not have an equivalent in corporate america. Certainly not as attended by the top guy. It would be shot down as a waste of time pretty quickly. And certainly not every executive would make 82 of them in a row during a season.
And in your scenario, AI is the CEO. Everyone else on that team's management was a dime a dozen executive easily enough replaced by a string of candidates with equal qualifications. AI was the irreplaceable and undiplicatable piece. If he misses one of the 200 "meetings" they are having that season and it isn't game, then it isn't that big a deal.
That team had far bigger problems. And AI had far bigger problems. But it certainly wasn't that he missed four or five practices during his career.