Iverson Impact: Iverson's cultural impact
Commissioner Adam Silver called Allen Iverson a "special talent" with a "unique personality." (USA Today Images)
The Wells Fargo Center was decorated with No. 3 jerseys Saturday night, fans paying tribute to Allen Iverson on the night the franchise was doing the same.
Pat Croce flew in from Cuba to be a part of the ceremony that took Iverson's No. 3 to the rafters. Croce arrived in the middle of the first quarter to a rousing applause and, in true Croce fashion, he high-fived every fan along the way.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver acknowledged the unique talent that Allen Iverson was and how he represented much of what was going on in society at the time he was making a name for himself in the NBA.
“Allen was a special talent and a unique personality,” Silver said. “The great things he did for the league far outweighed the occasional headache.
“He was representative of his generation,” Silver continued. “Whatever the popular music of that generation, whatever the fashion was, that was the case with Allen. He was at the forefront of hip hop. His personal style was a change, but it was reflecting what was happening in society.
“I think people came to understand that he shouldn’t be judged by his tattoos, hair style or anything else. Fans had enormous respect for him because they knew he left everything on the court. Ultimately, he was judged by his passion for the game.”
Gary Payton, Doug Overton, Dikembe Mutombo and Theo Ratliff were among Iverson’s peers who came to Philadelphia to show their respect for The Answer.
Julius Erving, Moses Malone and Earl Cureton, members of the 1983 NBA title team, were also in attendance.
Iverson becomes the ninth Sixers player to have his number retired.