Totally different personalities
NBA legend and one of the most influential players in league history, Allen Iverson, made a guest appearance on the Geto Boys Reloaded podcast. Iverson talked about several things from his life and NBA career, saying changing his number when he joined the Detroit Pistons was hard and the worst time in his career. On top of that, he sent a message to all the people that were discussing his financial problems, telling them to worry about themselves and their problems instead of his.
However, Iverson used the opportunity to also talk about one of the most influential people he crossed paths with, the legendary coach Larry Brown. With both coming from two absolutely different worlds and mindsets, there was an immediate clash between Brown and Iverson. In the interview, Iverson admits that overcoming their differences was a real challenge, especially at that point in their lives. Still, it was something that he needed to do to become a better person because Brown wanted the best for Iverson.
"He just didn't understand. I am a hip-hop dude. We are from two different parts of the world. He was trying to make me become who I am now. That is what he was doing. That is my motherf**ing man, that is my man, and I love him to death."
Brown changed Iverson's life
Iverson immediately took the league by storm when he got drafted in 1996, but it was in 2001 when he really blew up in terms of popularity after making it to the NBA Finals. Despite losing to the leading title contenders, the Los Angeles Lakers, Iverson earned a fan base that has remained faithful to him still to this day, and his off-the-court impact caught the league by surprise.
It took some time for Iverson to embrace Brown and his advice, and vice versa; Brown wasn't sure if he wanted to coach Iverson anymore, but they successfully overcame those challenges. Iverson recalls it all started in 2000 when he learned to accept the positive criticism Brown gave him instead of taking it personally and completely neglecting his advice.
"The change came in 2000, and I thought he was criticizing me, and I couldn't accept constructive criticism. When I started to realize he loved me and what what is best for me and the team, that is when I turned from Allen Iverson a good basketball player, to a Hall-of-Famer."
Unfortunately, they weren't able to win a championship together, and even though they had a great run from which they both learned a lot about each other, it feels like they could have done more. The proof of that is the inability of the Sixers management to surround Iverson with more pieces that could have helped him compete and challenge the Lakers. On the other hand, when he left the Sixers to join the Detroit Pistons, Brown soon had all the players he needed, and the success followed soon after when they beat the Lakers in the 2004 NBA Finals.