When the Philadelphia 76ers drafted Allen Iverson, he immediately took the league by storm with his unbelievable swagger on the basketball court. In combination with his iconic style, his skill set made him an instant fan favorite, with him impacting a generation of kids that picked up the basketball just because of seeing him play. He was fierce, and it seemed he had no fear of going up against much bigger guys because he would, for the most part, outperform them in every possible way.
When you watched him play, it seemed he had no respect for anyone on the opposing teams, but in an interview for the Slam Magazine, Iverson mentioned one other guard that he looked up to and in some way tried to model his game around. That player is Latrell Sprewell, one of the most electrifying guards from the '90s and early '00s who played on several tremendous and memorable teams during that period. Iverson said he never wanted to be like Mike, but he loved how Sprewell approached the game.
"If I could be any other player, I wouldn't be Michael Jordan, man..I would take Latrell Sprewell's game. I love the way he plays."
If you were a fan of the Warriors in the mid-90s and then later on the Knicks and the Timberwolves, you know why Latrell was a four-time All-Star. He was equally efficient on both sides of the floor, and his tenacity set him apart from other guards in the NBA. Iverson saw a lot of himself in Spree since they had the same type of energy and demeanor, they brought every single night competing like it's a playoff game, and their life depended on them winning the game.
"Energy. He can play the whole damn game. He's got pride with his game, you know. And he's just hard. When I look at him, I see myself, cause he don't care who you are, he just goest at you. He goes right at your chest, crazy hard."
When you look at his resume, you can't help but admire Sprewell's accomplishments, making him one of the most recognizable players from that era. Even though he had a few incidents in his career that somewhat tarnished his reputation, like the one when he choked out his coach P.J. Carlesimo, it's pretty understandable why Iverson looked up to him from a basketball perspective. He was a true competitor who rarely took a night off, and his consistency throughout his career was pretty admirable when you consider the way he played the game.