NBA star/rapper Allen Iverson has announced his retirement from the NBA in a statement released on commentator Stephen A. Smith’s website yesterday (November 25th).
Iverson, who played in the NBA for 13 years, was a 10 time All-Star, who played with the 76ers from 1996 until 2006.
From 2006 until 2008 Iverson played with the Denver Nuggets. In 2009, the Nuggets traded Iverson to the Detroit Pistons, where he sat out the majority of the season.
A back injury was officially sited as the reason for his deactivation.
Iverson signed a one-year contract with the Memphis Grizzlies in September, but left the team earlier this month for personal reasons.
Last week the Grizzlies terminated Iverson’s contract, after the former star player played in only three games.
In a statement on Smith’s website, Iverson stated that he was stepping away from the game to spend quality time with his wife and children.
“I would like to announce my plans from the National Basketball Association,” Iverson said in a statement. “I always thought that when I left the game, it would be because I couldn’t help my team the way that I was accustomed to. However, that is not the case. I still have tremendous love for the game, the desire to play and a whole lot left in my tank. I feel strongly that I can still compete at the highest level.”
Iverson thanked a number of influential people in his statement, including Magic Johnson, Isaiah Thomas, Charles Barkley, Larry Bird, his mother, John Thompson and Philadelphia 76ers former head coach Larry Brown, with whom Iverson had a tumultuous relationship.
Under his rap name Juelz, Iverson has recorded with a variety of rappers including Mase, Mysonne and Harlem World.
In 2000 his track “40 Bars” leaked. The track contained numerous explicative lyrics as well as derogatory remarks against homosexuals.
The track was never released nor was the album.
“To the city of Philadelphia I have wonderful memories of my day in a Sixers uniform,” Iverson stated. “To Philly fans, thank you. Your voice will always be music to my ears.”