Allen Iverson and Kobe Bryant share a deep connection – something that keeps him grounded to this day
A young fan brought a Kobe-Iverson poster to a meet-up where Iverson was doing signings, but it so turned out that this moment was more emotional for Iverson than the fan. The poster was an iconic picture from the NBA finals in 2001, specifically Game 4. He was ecstatic to relive that moment through the photo and wanted to keep one for himself.
It definitely looked like he was holding back emotions since the Black Mamba and he go way back. The wounds may heal with time, but the memories remain. The fans may know Kobe in one way, but players and friends know him better than we fans ever could. The connection was real, and the emotion behind the pause and the disbelief genuine.
The Answer was without a question one of the greatest rivals Kobe ever faced – their battles were always legendary. While they were vying to knock each off the pedestal on the court, their rivalry turned into friendship off it. Bubba Chucks was there at Utah for Kobe’s final game to cheer him on. In 2020 when the news of Kobe broke out, AI could not hold back his emotions. He turned up to the game against the Clippers wearing a shirt that had the iconic photo of Kobe sitting with the trophy in the locker room. The same trophy that was won against AI in 2001.
Allen Iverson was a shining light for the 76ers – he went toe to toe with everybody
Despite his size, AI was not one to back down from a challenge. Supremely confident in his abilities, Iverson was ready to take on anyone. So confident in his abilities, he even crossed Michael Jordan as a rookie! Not a bad way to introduce yourself to the crowd. For someone listed at exactly 6 feet, he shook people much taller and more physically imposing than him.
He may have never won a ring in his career, but he definitely deserved one. Unfortunately for AI, he played in an era that was dominated by the likes of Kobe, Tim Duncan, and Dirk Nowitzki, all fierce rivals from the opposite conference. To bring a team like Philly to the finals single-handedly is no mean feat – but to stop a juggernaut like a 3-peat winning Lakers was a whole other ball game.
While he may not have a team trophy to show for in his career, individual accolades laced his retirement cap galore. He was a 4-time scoring champion, in an era that had an offensive monster like Kobe Bryant, an overall unstoppable force like Shaquille O’Neal, and a fundamental expert like Tim. Their battle was legendary, and one could only wonder how much more he could have achieved had he moved to a bigger team in his career when he was in his prime.