So it looks like an Iverson deal is going to happen, maybe sooner than later. The Wolves/Jazz AP story tonight (good win for the Wolves BTW) says Casey and McHale both were asked about Iverson-to-Minnesota trade rumors and had no comments. I haven’t been able to find Wolves speculation on ESPN or the Philly Inquirer, so I’m not sure what the rumors are. But, part of the potential Iverson deal to Boston this summer was about Philly getting Randy Foye in the draft.
I’m just trying to wrap my head around what it would take to get Iverson, and whether that’s something I would want to happen as a Wolves fan. You have to figure Philly’s going to want a young, lottery-type talent in return for Iverson, and the fact that Foye fits that profile, is hugely popular in Philly having played college ball at Villanova, and also plays the same position as Iverson, makes him a natural target. Add in the fact that Philly contemplated a Foye-for-Iverson scenario already, only to see the team tank, makes it seem pretty likely the Wolves could land Iverson if they wanted him badly enough.
Is there any way for the Wolves to do the deal without giving up Foye or Garnett? I don’t see how, but Billy King’s almost as bad a GM as McHale, so who knows? But wouldn’t King get skinned alive by the fanbase if he made a deal with the Wolves and didn’t bring Randy Foye back to Philly?
So what else does it take to get Allen Iverson? Randy Foye and Troy Hudson (wishful thinking), maybe Trenton Hassell, maybe Marko Jaric. Doesn’t seem like much of a return for one of the most unique players in history, one who still averages 31.2 points per game. I’m guessing the Sixers covet Foye and not much else the Wolves have to offer, which could mean more than one team getting involved.
Iverson is a force of nature. His mere presence would transform any team in unpredictable ways. His identity, by definition, becomes his team’s identity, and for that reason there are just certain places Iverson can’t play. A team with Kobe Bryant and Allen Iverson isn’t going to work. Allen Iverson’s impact on the Suns would be explosive, but would it make the Suns better? Is Iverson going to work in San Antonio or with LeBron in Cleveland? Don’t get me wrong, any of those combinations would be a spectacle, but think of the strain it would put on a team simply to adjust to somebody like Allen Iverson.
What Iverson needs is another superstar who doesn’t necessarily demand the ball, but who matches Iverson’s intensity, will to win, and overall impact on the game. It would be a special bonus if that other superstar were a dominating rebounder, and a big man who not only drew double-teams down low, but was adept at passing out of them.
Could a team centered around Iverson and Garnett win an NBA title? That’s the question, because if they can’t there’s no point in divorcing yourself from Randy Foye’s promising future, and probably at least six or seven first round picks, considering McHale is making this deal. I obviously have no idea whether an Iverson/Garnett combo could win an NBA title at this point in their careers, but it sure seems like something that has potential. Both those guys would love to take a run at a title, and they know time is running out. Maybe Iverson plays D for real in his new home, and maybe they both start having more fun than they’ve ever had in the NBA, now that they have a complementary superstar (in both talent and personality) to share the load with.
I think I just talked myself into the deal, which I didn’t expect. But I don’t think Glen Taylor would pull the trigger on that, so I’ll believe it when I see Iverson in a Wolves uniform.
But he’s going somewhere, and regardless of where it is it’s going to be fun to watch.