In today's Inquirer, Stephen A. Smith berates A.I. "Use your head, A.I., He needs to realize his last chance for a ring isn't here". Once again Stephen A is talking out of both sides of his mouth. For years now he's railed at Iverson ... he's selfish ... he's immature ... he's not a team guy. For his part, A.I. has been saying all the right things. He has been vilified for the Sixers ills and offered up on the trading block this summer. But A.I. says his heart is in Philly and he wants to finish his career a 76er.
So Stephen is asking ... How long will it be before Iverson explodes? He implores AI to start complaining. Hey, Steve ... isn't that the kind of attitude you (the media) belittle professional athletes for? Perhaps Iverson is quietly seeking other opportunities thru his agent. I am sure he pines for a ring. So what!
Loyalty has been too much to ask from a pro athlete for some time. So why discourage it. Why can't we cheer a guy who picks his team over the quest for a ring. Instead he rolls out the rehashed media dribble that a player needs a ring to validate their career.
His team may be too young to win a ring in the twilight of his career, but Iverson is still a solid NBA box office draw. Allen Iverson has had a remarkable career (ring or not). Why can't we celebrate that?