Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Iverson's Move to Detroit

At one time, Allen Iverson vowed that his pairing with Carmelo Anthony on the Denver Nuggets would bring a title to the squad. This came after Iverson spent many controversy-filled seasons in Philadelphia. He had incidents with coaches and teammates, the famous "Practice?" clips on ESPN, an MVP award and then a trip to the Finals where the LA Lakers eventually dismantled his Sixers. Denver seemed like a bit of a saving grace for Iverson as he mellowed out with Melo. AI made the All-Star squad and the team made the playoffs, but heightened expectations didn't translate into a strong playoff presence. Team D was blamed for the team not making a strong push.

Now just a day ago, Iverson has been traded to his third NBA Team, the Detroit Pistons. In exchange for AI, Denver picks up Chauncey Billups, Antonio McDyess and Cheikh Samb. The questions of who got the best of the deal already start pouring out. Mr. Big Shot Billups would be a welcome addition to most squads, but will he fit in well with Denver and Melo? The same goes for AI, will he work in the style of play the Pistons use? The Pistons are not as much an uptempo run and gun type team as Denver has been. Iverson now plays alongside Rip Hamilton, but he'll most likely be the Pistons lead scorer and go-to-guy. His talents will be welcome but may disrupt Detroit.

Experience is a factor in the NBA, but age can be as well. It might not be the popular analysis, but Denver may have added more at this point than Detroit. Billups provides veteran playoff experience and leadership. He's won the title that Melo wants and can help guide the team in a playoff run. Not to mention he plays D and can knock down the big shots. McDyess helps in the defensive needs as well as rebounding, even though he's up there in age. He'll most likely defer to Melo as lead scorer and set him up with the shots he wants. At the same time, Iverson is on a squad with a few guys left over from that Pistons Championship Squad. Iverson, McDyess and Billups aren't exactly young though, and aging players don't always guarantee a team is going to win it all.

Read the Washington Post article on Iverson's trade

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