After Stephen A. Smith’s spotlight-grabbing scoop yesterday that Allen Iverson was retiring, which included a live appearance on ESPN SportsCenter to make the announcement, Smith is now backtracking. From his Iverson *retirement* story on his blog:
(Kicked to the curb: S.A.S. knows just how A.I. feels)
Immediately after word came out that Iverson had announced he was retiring, sources close to him said he was having a change of heart.
“Word” came out? Uh, Stephen, no one else reported it but you, because we all know Iverson has no intention of retiring.
ESPN’s Ric Bucher gives us a clue why.
The more likely scenario is that Iverson finally figured out that no team in the league wanted his bad act anymore. And he went crying to Smith, who then ran with a trumped-up, *official* retirement announcement that Iverson moments later retracted. (Funny, don’t remember S.A.S.’ follow-up phone call to SportsCenter about that.)
Not coincidentally, Stephen A. buried the “change of heart” graf in his blog piece, giving no indication that his story of Iverson’s retirement was already dust in the wind.
This story is more about Smith attempting to barge back into the NBA media spotlight than it was Iverson leaving the league voluntarily. S.A.S. is dying to show ESPN that he’s still relevent after getting kicked to the curb by the WWL.
Breaking news and then backpedaling faster than Lester Hayes isn’t going to do much for his credibility. Not that it really matters at this point. The best he could nine months after getting canned by ESPN was legally forcing the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER to take him back at the position he was at previous to Mark Sharpiro gifting him a gig in Bristol.
In other words, nobody wants Smith either. Maybe he can *retire* too!
Thanks to Jorge Sierra at Hoopshype.com for the tip.