Allen Iverson thanks Michael Jordan, discusses cultural impact

Ethan Miller

Allen Iverson is officially calling it quits with professional basketball today and was open with media during his press conference.

Allen Iverson held a press conference in Philadelphia on Wednesday hours prior to his official retirement event during the Philadelphia 76ers' home opener Wednesday night and reflected on his 14-year NBA career with media. During his speech he thanked Michael Jordan for providing him a dream to follow and had no regrets for staying true to himself despite taking a "beating" for it.

"I have to thank Michael Jordan for just giving me a vision. Without that vision I don't think it would have been possible. He made me want to play basketball. He basically showed me the way. He gave me that path that I wanted to walk on," he said of Jordan's impact on his life.

Iverson's impact on the court as a six-foot 165 lb. point guard who relentlessly attacked the rim is without question, but he also acknowledged his cultural impact. "I took an ass kicking for me being me through my career. For looking the way I look and dressing the way I dress. You look around and you see all the guys in the NBA and all of them have tattoos. All of them have corn rows."

"I took a beating for those type of things and I'm proud to be able to say I changed a lot in this culture and in this game. It's not about how you look on the outside."

Liberty BallersHow the Sixers can win tonight

Something else he took a beating on? The infamous"practice" incident. Iverson shed light on the event, stating the conference was being held to discuss the fact that the 76ers were not trading him and he was dealing with a personal tragedy that occurred earlier in the day and was upset when the subject turned to practice instead of the matter at hand.

"I thought that once this day came it would be basically a tragic day. I never imagined the day coming but I knew it would come," Iverson said. "I'm happy with my decision and I feel great. I'm in a great mindset."

Quotes via the NBA's live press conference stream.

More from SB Nation NBA:

Longform: How the Pistons became a team apart from Detroit

David Roth: NBA players, the last and tallest fans of HBO's "Entourage"

The Hook: Clippers' defensive woes on full display

The King's Revolution: How things changed since LeBron made The Decision

Welcome back, NBA! In-depth previews for all 30 teams

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.


You must be a member of to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at You should read them.


You must be a member of to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.