May 3, 2005.
Ichiro climbs the wall to make a great catch, robbing a home run. Afterward, he jokingly called the catch “routine.”
Reimagining the World Cup, by James Taylor
The World Cup is quickly approaching, with kick-off in Rio de Janerio less than one hundred days away. That said, there’s still plenty of time to remember and admire the past. In a poster series commemorating previous World Cups, Manhattan-based graphic designer, James Taylor, reimagined posters for each tournament, using era-specific design principles to illustrate the unique style of each World Cup. You can find the whole collection on Pennarello Design. [Posted by Maxi]
There’s a well-worn backhanded compliment about Allen Iverson.
'He was great for his size.'
Allen Iverson was great for any size. He does not need any padded qualifiers to justify the hyperbole around his game. Iverson is a flat out legend. He was simply great.
Period. Paragraph. End of career.
Single defenders could not keep up with Iverson. He was too quick, too fidgety to be contained. It wasn’t a matter of when Iverson would cross you up, but how. No two of his killer crossovers were the same.
His handles and first step defined a generation of wannabe streetballing Iversons. You know the types. The dudes down at the local court, wearing a sleeve on their arm because Iverson did. Same with the tats, same with the do-rag. Then the game starts and these Iverson-lites start doing crossovers at half-court, unguarded but still determined to show off their handles.
But Iverson was inimitable.
Once he would leave his man off balance, nursing broken ankles and a nasty floorburn, he would turn his attack to the forest trees defending the lane.
There was no hesitation. No thought of ‘oh, but my size…’ There was only clear and decisive cutting to the hoop. There was the intentional drawing of contact. There was very often a foul. And also, very often, there was the ball going through the hoop to start yet another three-point play.
Iverson played with a heart as big as the invisible chip on his shoulder. He never lost that chip. Even when he was certified league MVP and taking his sub-par Sixers team single-handedly to the NBA Finals in 2001. The chip remained. When asked repeatedly about the events of once infamous ‘practice’ the chip most definitely remained.
Iverson seemed uncomfortable being the best player in the game after Jordan. He didn’t accept being an heir apparent. He seemed determined to promote an image of himself that went against everything MJ had conveyed with his. Iverson was controversial in interviews, where Jordan had been unfailingly diplomatic. He chose to be loyal to the streets, where Jordan had chosen to be loyal to the boardrooms. Iverson was a walking tattoo parlor menu, while Jordan chose to display no ink.
To fans, Allen Iverson was the changing face of the NBA during the growing pains of not having Michael Jordan around. You always got the feeling that Iverson sensed that, but that he didn’t want to come within a mile of a mantle that weighty.
Instead, we were just treated to some of the best individual basketball we have ever witnessed. We were treated to a singular talent who seemed to give 210% on a nightly basis. We enjoyed a prinkly personality who gave us soundbytes even when he was trying to ignore the media. Yet for all we witnessed of Iverson’s extraordinary talent, we still know so little about him. Ironic for a man whose nickname is The Answer.
So tonight, as Iverson’s number 3 is rightly raised to the rafters, we are left with questions about who the man was. But we are left with nothing but certainty about the basketball player Allen Iverson was.
Allen Iverson was great.