One of the ultimate moments/highlights in NBA history is the famous crossover Iverson did on Michael Jordan during his rookie season. That move was immediately immortalized because, at that time, it represented a clash of generations going head to head. Iverson represented the young and rebellious part of the NBA. At the same time, Jordan was a representation of a subtle and business-oriented generation of players in the league.
The fans went crazy after that crossover, after which Iverson made a jump shot. Even Jordan himself was impressed with what he saw from Iverson that game because Iverson could back up all the hype that was surrounding him. Jordan made a guest appearance on one of the basketball summer camps back in 1998 when he was asked about the crossover and whether he felt embarrassed by it. Jordan admitted it was a great crossover and that he always showed respect for players who bring the crowd to their feet with a specific move during the game.
“I mean, that was a great move. I’m never the type of guy that says; I can’t get shown up. I just try to limit these opportunities. So, I’m not going to try to make it 1-on-1 between Allen Iverson and myself. You never know, if we play 1-on-1 again, I think he could beat me on the perimeter, but I could take him on the post.”
On top of that, Jordan gave more insight into Iverson as a player and what he needs to achieve to have a successful NBA career. It’s interesting to observe Jordan’s response about Iverson and his career now over 20 years later. Jordan knew he would have to face Iverson several more times during his career, so he already looked at it as a challenge. He immediately saw the raw potential and talent Iverson had, which just needed more polishing to become even better.
“He’s a heck of a good player. He’s a young talent, and I think he’s going to continue to get better once he learns how to play the game on a much higher scale. Right now he is doing it a lot on physical ability, and he’s good, he’s quick. That’s a challenge for me to try to go out to him and his stature. He’s so quick and small. But it’s a challenge I won’t back away from. He may crossover on me again. At least I’m gonna get out there and try.”