Allen Iverson grew up idolizing His Airness, Michael Jordan, all his life. It must, therefore, have been a pleasure to be trash talked in his first meeting.
Jordan is undoubtedly one of the few larger-than-life figures in sporting history. His legacy is such that he’s still America’s most beloved team athlete, decades after his last tipoff.
Among the things that made him such a huge appeal was his insatiable competitive streak. A set of attached behaviors came with this, including his mental fortitude and the ability to unsettle his opponents with his words.
Jordan’s reputation as a trash talker was based on years of him talking smack to his opponents. Rookies would come into games looking to test him out, and they’d get their trap shut more often than not.
Allen Iverson recalls how Michael Jordan hilariously addressed him in his first meeting
Allen Iverson sat down with Complex a few years ago, giving a tell-all interview about his time as an NBA player. The topic of his rookie year and faceoffs with MJ was obviously brought up. AI revealed how MJ gave him a ‘Welcome to the NBA’ moment with his very first words:
“The first time I ever talked to him was that year, playing in the rookie game. I’ll never forget it, because he said, ‘What’s up, you little bi***?’ I’ll never forget it. I looked at him like … ‘All right, man.’”
“What’s Up You Little B***h”
Allen Iverson’s first encounter with Michael Jordan was one he’d never forget. 😂
— Hoops Nostalgia (@HoopsNostalgia) May 4, 2021
Another famous incident from Iverson’s rookie year is obviously the famous crossover and jumpshot. This came about in the duo’s third contest against each other.
The Sixers legend would go on to be one of the faces of the league and one of the most popular players worldwide. Iverson’s legacy as a Hall of Famer requires a much longer article.