NBA stars pay homage to Allen Iverson after jersey retirement by Sixers
After the Sixers honored 11-time All-Star Allen Iverson with an elaborate jersey retirement ceremony on Saturday, some of the NBA's biggest stars took to social media to paid homage to The Answer.
LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and other NBA players posted photographs and messages of respect to Iverson, who formally announced his retirement from basketball last fall and saw his No. 3 raised to the Wells Fargo Center rafters at halftime of Washington's 122-103 road victory.
Here's a brief sampling of the messages, many of which reference the 6-foot, 165-pound Iverson's reputation as one of the greatest "pound for pound" basketball players of all time. For more on Iverson's on-court and off-court legacies, check out The Point Forward's rundown of the most memorable moments of his career.
Heat forward LeBron James: "Pound for pound!! Congrats homie. What a pleasure to complete against u and also become a friend in the process. U the reason why I got tattoos, wore a headband and arm sleeve. Thanks for everything!!#AITheGoat #BubbaChuck #HOFNext"
Thunder forward Kevin Durant: "One time for chuck! #poundforpound #THEGOAT"
Lakers guard Kobe Bryant: "Time has wings my brotha. Your game pushed my then 21 year old self to play beyond my years. Your impact on the game will be felt for generations. #salute #respect #96 #AI"
Heat guard Dwyane Wade: "Pound for pound... I had a pleasure of competing against and playing with one of the greatest to do it.. Much love and Respect to @theofficialai3"
Wat a great honor to play and get the win on the nite my role model got his jersey retired....#TheAnswer !! pic.twitter.com/TZA0WDRWtM
— John Wall (@John_Wall) March 2, 2014
Pacers guard Evan Turner: "Pound for pound one of the greatest of all time! His confidence and tenacity was so inspiring. Coach Mullins always told me that everyone should compete with the heart and effort that had. #longlivethelegend #respect"
Lakers guard Kendall Marshall: "He's the reason point guards wanted to wear the #3. he's the reason kids were cutting socks to make arm sleeves. he's the reason braids with a headband became cool. he's the reason kids were gettin called for carry in every aau tournament. he's the reason the NBA has a dress code. the most influential player of my era. Allen Iverson. #PoundForPound #Greatness"
Iverson became the eighth player in Sixers franchise history to have his jersey retired, joining: Charles Barkley (No. 34), Wilt Chamberlain (No. 13), Maurice Cheeks (No. 10), Billy Cunningham (No. 32), Julius Erving (No. 6), Hal Greer (No. 15) and Bobby Jones (No. 24). He will be eligible for induction into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015.