Iverson hopes to resume NBA career
Allen Iverson(notes) fully intends to resume his NBA career, preferably this season, his personal manager told Yahoo! Sports on Monday night.
Iverson reached an agreement on Monday to part ways with the Memphis Grizzlies after previously taking a leave of absence from the team. He is expected to clear waivers in a couple of days and become a free agent.
“There is absolutely no doubt that he still wants to play,” said Gary Moore, Iverson’s personal manager. “There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind. He will be working out every day until he hears from someone.”
A New York Daily News report said the New York Knicks would explore possibly signing Iverson. Team president Donnie Walsh wasn’t committal, telling the Daily News, "We'll look into it. Right now, I'd say probably not, but we'll see."
Moore has not heard anything from the Knicks, but said Iverson would be excited about playing in New York, provided the team’s interest is sincere.
“That’s one of his favorite places to play,” Moore said. “He loves [Mike] D’Antoni’s style of play. He’s always had respect for Donnie Walsh since his days in Indiana. We’d be elated if that is true.
“We don’t want to jump the gun. … But that would definitely be of interest. That would work family-wise with him having family in Philly and his wife having family in New York.”
The Grizzlies allowed Iverson to leave the team on Nov. 7 to attend to some personal matters. His departure, however, also came directly after he had complained about his role with the team. Iverson appeared in only three games for Memphis, coming off the bench in each.
Iverson has been spending time with his family in Atlanta, Moore said. Moore thanked Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley for continuing to support Iverson through the process.
Iverson’s wife and children did not move to Memphis after previously living in his other playing cities of Detroit, Denver and Philadelphia. Moore said it was difficult for Iverson to be away from his family, which is why he would prefer to play for an Eastern Conference team.
“His spirits are very high,” Moore said. “There is nothing damaging to his spirits or anything. This time was necessary for him. God and family first, then basketball.”
Iverson attracted little interest on the summer free-agent market prior to signing a one-year, $3.1 million contract with the Grizzlies. The Los Angeles Clippers initially had some interest, but balked when Iverson made it clear he wanted to start.
A handful of general managers and executives surveyed on Monday expect most teams to pass on trying to sign him. Moore said although no team has yet to reach out to Iverson, the 34-year-old guard is focused on returning to the NBA and not playing overseas.
Moore said Iverson would even agree to come off the bench if he signs with a championship-caliber team.
“It doesn’t have to be a starting role if it’s the right situation, right circumstances,” Moore said.