Allen Iverson’s speech at the Hall of Fame was a hotly-anticipated event, and it didn’t disappoint. The Answer thanked seemingly everyone under the sun in a sprawling 31-minute affair, closing with this message for his friends and foes alike.
It was Iverson at his finest, unafraid to take on his detractors in his shining moment. After all the love he showed to fallen comrades, journalists and his various teammates, he saved some of that famous edge to close out the speech.
Iverson spoke of his reverence for Michael Jordan throughout the speech, and in this moment his idolization of Air Jordan was most apparent. Jordan’s controversial induction ceremony contained plenty of shots at detractors and doubters, and his pupil saw fit to follow his lead.
Aside from the ending, Iverson’s shout outs contained a bundle of notable names, including but not limited to:
- Notorious B.I.G.
- Marc Zumoff
- Eric Snow
- Phil Jasner
- Michael Jackson
- Dei Lynam
- LeBron James
- Stephen A. Smith
- Chris Paul
- Pat Croce
- Aaron McKie
Iverson didn’t close the festivities — that honor was left to Shaquille O’Neal — but based on the crowd noise during his speech, he was the star of the show. Philadelphia fans showed up in droves to shower their guy with love, and the chants of “MVP” from the rafters stoked memories of decade-old playoff wins.
We’ll have more on Iverson’s speech tomorrow, but for now it’s time to bask in the glow of another legendary performance. One thing’s for sure — that guy can still capture the attention of a crowd.