Thursday, March 20, 2008

Brotherly Love for AI

At times the American sports culture seems dominated by too much negativity, inflated hype or invigorating greed. Whether it is the media's relentless gotcha style of journalism, ESPN's Disney based corporate agenda, or sports fans continually being bled of their paychecks to support billionaires' rising prices, many can be left to wonder where the bright stories are in sports.

Further disheartening is only teams that win it all are considered successful and the rest are labeled losers or worst, chokers. It makes me wonder why I follow sports so intently and passionately when the most toxic aspects appear to surface more often than the positives.

The highlights of last night's Nuggets/76er game reminded me of my prideful love of sports and dimmed my burgeoning pessimistic outlook.

I have been a huge Allen Iverson fan ever since his Hoya days and his return trip to Philly last night as a Nugget was an awesome emotional event.

The notorious fickle Philly crowd gave a standing ovation to the All Time 76er great during pregame introductions and AI was truly touched by the tremendous show of respectful class.

Iverson blew kisses to the crowd repeatedly and pounded his chest to show his love for Philly fans. He embraced his former coach Mo Cheeks and before tip off, Iverson kneeled down, kissing the center circle. His game shoes were embroidered with "THXPHILA."

AI reflected afterwards:

“It almost got to me,” Iverson acknowledged. “It made me feel good. It made me feel appreciated. I didn't actually have tears in my eyes, but they were burning. At one point I had to hold my head up so they wouldn't fall."

AI ended up with 32 points, 8 dimes and 3 steals. He missed a game winning shot at the end and the 76ers won 115-113.

“I dreamed it up a certain way, and it was better than that,” Iverson said. “Everything was perfect but one thing, and that was not winning the game.”

Slam Magazine in person account

Video of Pre Game Intros
Iverson Georgetown Highlights
Nuggets/76ers RecapBox Score of Game
Click on NBA Daily, March 19th

(Pictures Courtesy of Getty Images)

Mac Gs World


Matt Fairchild ( said...

Amen brotha...I thought that was really cool of the Philly crowd to honor AI and to see him return the love is refreshing to say the least.

gerry dorsey said...

as who person who's not a huge fan of ai or the city of philly...this was a really cool little story.

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