Changing his iconic number
NBA players are superstitious in numerous different ways, and having the same jersey number throughout their entire career is one of them. Former NBA player and absolute legend of the game Allen Iverson is one of those guys, and in a recent interview for the Geto Boys Reloaded podcast; he talked about the time he couldn't get his favorite number 3 when he started playing for the Detroit Pistons.
Ever since his high-school days, Allen Iverson wore the same number, and it's the one in which he made a name for himself as one of the deadliest guards in NBA history. His number 3 jersey from the Sixers days is still, to this day, one of the most iconic jerseys of all time, and even when he got to the Denver Nuggets, they let him wear the same number. After Iverson decided to join the Detroit Pistons at the age of 33 and past his prime, he couldn't wear it because it was already taken by his teammate Rodney Stuckey.
It didn't feel right
Rodney Stuckey wanted to welcome his new All-Star teammate in the right way and even offered to give the number back to Iverson. Instead, he chose to wear number 1 and admits that affected his overall performance and happiness. He said he wanted to change his jersey number but couldn't, which didn't sit well with him from day one.
"I know shit was fucked up when I got to Detroit, and I couldn't get my number.Kobe changed his number from 8 to 24, and he just f***ed up money for the NBA when he changed his number. I couldn't change my number, so I had to wear one, and I knew it was f***ed up, even though I wore it when I was little, every time I would put my jersey on, that s**t didn't feel right."
Iverson stayed with the Pistons for that one season in which he was the second-leading scorer behind Rip Hamilton but played in only 54 games due to various injuries that caught up to him after all those years and minutes in his legs. The team didn't have any significant success in the playoffs, and soon after, he joined the Memphis Grizzlies before his last stop, last season with the Philadelphia 76ers. They later immortalized his iconic number 3 jersey into the rafters where it always belonged.