It is officially the end of an era.
Tonight (Mar. 1), as the Philadelphia 76ers took on the Washington Wizards, the franchise dedicated the night to the retirement of one of its greatest players: Allen Iverson. Decking the Wells Fargo Center out with posters and memorabilia, the Sixers gave Iverson an all-out goodbye, raising his No. 3 into the rafters during halftime. Gesturing his signature hand-to-the-ear, the fearless guard was met with roaring applause and a standing ovation as he delivered an emotional speech.
“They wanted me to talk about how much y’all loved me,” he said. “But trust me, the feeling is mutual.”
Thanking Michael Jordan for inspiring him to pick up the rock, Iverson also mentioned former teammate Aaron McKie. His former coach Larry Brown — with whom he had been to hell and back — also offered him a warm message via video, saying “God put me here to coach you.”
Current 76ers players donned Iverson’s No. 3 on their warmup suits, while the organization gifted him with an iPad loaded with his highlight videos, a championship belt, and a boat.
Iverson summed up his time with the Sixers and the NBA as the realization of his dreams.
“You’ll have to show me the fool that says ‘dreams don’t come true,’ because they do,” he said.