NBA legend Allen Iverson: ‘I don’t even have money for a cheeseburger’
9:47 AM EDT
4/24/2013 by Terry Shropshire
Allen Iverson, one of the greatest NBA players of this generation who earned more than $150 million during his playing career, cannot even afford a cheeseburger today.
Just three years removed from the league that made him a multimillionaire, where the undersized 6-foot turbocharged dynamo earned the adulation of millions for winning against the giants, he has quickly spiraled into a pit of alcoholism, depression and bankruptcy.
Friends and family members say, however, that the seeds of his precipitous fall from grace and financial heaven were sown years ago.
Excerpt from the Washington Post:
“… For the past three years, as Iverson chased an NBA comeback, his marriage fell apart and much of his fortune – he earned more than $150 million in salary alone during his career – dissolved. Now, those who once ignored past signals have recognized that basketball may have been the only thing holding Iverson’s life together.
“He has hit rock bottom, and he just hasn’t accepted it yet,” says former Philadelphia teammate Roshown McLeod.
… Iverson stood during a divorce proceeding in Atlanta in 2012 and pulled out his pants pockets. “I don’t even have money for a cheeseburger,” he shouted toward his estranged wife, Tawanna, who then handed him $61.
From what I've read, he'll get a NBA pension at 45 and a huge lump sum from Reebok at 55...If he lives that long, but currently it seems he really is broke.
i was gonna say, wasnt he one of the first people to sign a 100 mil shoe deal?
edit: the deal is a 5 million dollar per year LIFETIME deal.. he isnt broke.
I think more than anything else the alcoholism ruined him. When he was young he could get away with practicing and playing on hangovers but like Vin Baker the booze broke down his focus. Its sad because he really does need help.
Like everyone else, I loved watching AI - his legacy to the game is seriously underrated. However, people need to stop playing the victim card (for themselves or others) and need to hold themselves and others accountable a little more. AI's bad decision making led to alcoholism and caused him to squander his fortune.
People are the product of their decisions. Those who blame their environments or self-manufactured diseases (alcoholism) for their problems will always be slaves to those realities. The world would have far fewer problems if more people would simply take responsibility for their actions and say things as they really are. If you have problems in your life when you're 40 years old, your should probably look in the mirror a little more and spend less time blaming your mom, neighborhood, alcoholism, etc.
"AI's bad decision making led to alcoholism and caused him to squander his fortune."
the nasty public divorce with child support payments for 5 kids, and the near death of his 3 y/o daughter had absolutely nothing to do with it.
NOBODY (in this entire thread) ever mentions that stuff, so i dont see where your getting that people are playing the victim card for him.. all i ever hear people say about ai is that he's selfish and doesnt care about his teammates but it just seems nobody really knows anything about his current life.
he needs help in the biggest way. alcoholism only helped add to ruin him though. he's severely depressed and on top of that drinking alcohol (and many other drugs not named weed) is about the last think you do when you are depressed. it makes everything worse. it's a very sad story. iverson was my favorite player at one point. it sounds like rock bottom to him, but it's not and hopefully it won't ever get there like ray williams, but it's bad enough. i cross my fingers that he gets some help. and from personal experience i hope he can find a great natural healer because they seem to work better than having a dependency or addiction on meds.
I feel bad for players like him who grow up in bad neighborhoods with broken families and make it out only to be pulled down by their past. It is not that he is bad person or he is stupid, when you look at the conditions he grew up in, many people fail to make it out or are viewed by society as failures even though they had very little chance to be something to begin with. If you have parents who abuse drugs, have drug dealers and gangsters in your neighborhood, have nobody who supports you and sets a good example for you, it is very hard to get out on your own. I am tired of the media making it seem like every athlete is a stupid and blow all their money. They didnt chose to grow up in the hood, or to have a tough childhood.
I remember watching the 30 for 30 on him and remember them saying how he often had to buy drugs for his mom and that when he was missing all those days of highschool he was really taking care of his younger brothers and sisters. Anyone who's ever known him personally defends him to the death. Larry Brown and John Thompson always defend him in interviews and have tried to reach out to him.
Its troubling to me that NBA players (and all pro athletes) dont have expertise around them to assist with basic long term financial planning. With sound financial planning, it should be impossible to blow the kind of money that Iverson made. He should have had 75% of his earnings invested in securities from the day he started getting paychecks from Philly. I think the league should do more to make sure young players are making wise financial decisions instead of just spending at an unsustainable rate and making poor investments in private equity ventures. Really sad. I hope he can pull his life together even if he never retains his ability to live lavishly. Surely if he could get his head on straight he could find a way to leverage his brand to keep a roof over his head.
Oh definitely. Every basketball camp in the country would pay him to show up for a day or two. Guy could easily make $350,000 a year just traveling around giving talks and hanging out. You think Philly couldn't structure him some deal where corporate types have AI show up at their suite during a game and the corporate types would drop a couple of grand for that experience.
But any job even one that just involves showing up and talking for a few hours, well they involve having the ability to show up. AI may no longer have that kind of self control. And he certainly has never seemed socially skilled enough to do the meet and greet stuff.
The league does give the guys lots of financial advice, but it is their money. Unless they literally turn the cash over to someone else, the temptation is to spend it. And the worse part is when they spend it on the big houses that require $10,000s a month just of upkeep and taxes, because as soon as the league checks stop coming those houses and the staff that comes with them bleeds you dry.
dude i guarentee if you made that kind of money, every single person would be hitting you up for it and you would give it to them.
Everyone I know would be hitting me up for money if I made that kind of money, but I certainly wouldn't just be handing it out to anyone who came asking. You aren't really doing anyone a favor if you're always bailing them out only for them to come back next week needing help.
I think he also has another account that he can't access until he's like 45 that will feed him 1 million dollars a year annually for about 32 years.
buy him a cheeseburger(with French fries and a soda) just to meet him and have a picture of both of us and of course an autograph signature from him. No matter what others say, he still one of the greatest to ever play basketball
I would allow him to live in my house for free just to be able to meet him and be around him. If you show up to a pick up game with allen iverson on your team, everyone would be jealous. I am pretty sure he can make a couple million a year playing in china just based off his name.
Every NBA player should read this article and watch the espn doc broke. These guys are blessed with gifts that I'd die for but can't handle the burden that comes with it. At the end of the day he's got himself to blame, he let himself be used and abused.
Damn... This is sad.
Sorry but I feel no sympathy for someone that would let that kind of money go down the toilet..perhaps karma kicked him in the butt for his actions earlier in life.
Iverson is one of the greatest talents of all time. But, do you really think that people want him to come and talk to kids about basketball. Despite his being supremely talented, A.I. also had one of the worst attitudes of all time when it came to practice, and he also managed to burn out of the league at an early age. He's only 37 years old, to put that into perspective Derek Fisher is 38 and is still in the league (I don't care how bad you guys think he is, that's still a feat in itself), we all know that A.I. had more talent in his off-hand than D. Fisher had in his whole body, but look at who's still in the league. It's Derek Fisher and it's because he was far more dedicated to the game in terms of working hard to extend his career. So when it comes to talking to kids, who do you think coaches would prefer to have come and talk to them?
I've seen recent pictures of him and suffice to say he looks grim. People say that it shouldn't be hard to make an NBA contract sustainable for the rest of your life but we forget about the parasites that follow sportspeople. In addition to that, I don't think we should say that he got what he deserved because it doesn't reflect well on anybody. Take for instance Dennis Rodman, a party demon who would splash the cash on an entire stadium given the opportunity, people stuck with him because of that and now he's struggling with his finances also. Why can't he get an advertising gig? I'm sure companies would love to tie-in his "practice" rant with their product or service, he'd get a lump sum out of it and even become the PR face of that company.
At 55 he get's 30 Mill From Reebok..
Another good article..A.I. get's a million dollars a year until he's 45 (pension) and then his reebok money..
To stop drinking. He has millions waiting and wants to live to see it again. He will be fine if he stops drinking. Someone get him a blunt.