Not only is Allen Iverson returning to the place where his NBA career started, he's also expected to return to a spot he always felt he deserved: the starting lineup.
The Philadelphia Inquirer's Kate Fagen is reporting that Iverson is expected to start in his Sixers debut Monday against the Denver Nuggets, one of his former teams. Fagen quotes Sixers head coach Eddie Jordan saying he "anticipates" starting Iverson in the backcourt, thanks in large part to the injuries to Louis Williams and Jrue Holiday. However, this could become a permanent thing based on Jordan's comments about Sunday's practice.
"A lot of energy," Jordan said of the practice. "A lot of veteran presence on the floor. A lot of hop to everybody’s step. There was really great energy and anticipation and it was better than I expected … because of his presence, because of his movement on the floor. What he does on the ball, off the ball, how he talks … because of all the things the average person doesn’t see."
Jordan also said Iverson's presence has the potential to make the rest of the team better because "the best players help their teammates and make their teammates better." However, Liberty Ballers, SB Nation's Philadelphia 76ers blog, comes up with a sobering stat. In the last four years, Iverson's teams (Sixers, Nuggets, Pistons, Grizzlies) are a combined 107-109 when he plays and 135-108 when he doesn't.
On the other hand, the 76ers are 5-15 and have lost nine in a row. They're in desperate need of some kind of spark, and Iverson might be the guy to provide it.