Allen Iverson Nearly Accepted Offer to Play in Venezuela

by Ryne Nelson / @slaman10

Jorge Hernandez was certain Allen Iverson would put basketball on the map in Venezuela—up until this morning. Hernandez, co-owner of Guaros de Lara in the Venezuelan League, was to introduce Iverson today as the team’s new point guard. Playing alongside Smush Parker, Iverson would bring unprecedented attention to Guaros.

“Everything was ready for his debut on Wednesday,” Hernandez told Venezuelan sports newspaper, Lider en Deportes. But Hernandez spoke too soon.

At 9 a.m. this morning, Hernandez received a call and was told that Iverson “does not want to leave the United States.” Speculation is that Iverson’s legal problems are keeping him in US for the time being.

Iverson’s most recent return to basketball has been bumpy to say the least. The Lakers considered signing Iverson this year, but Iverson dismissed L.A. when they asked him to play in the D-League first.

Guaros reportedly hasn’t lost hope of signing Iverson, but they’re not waiting for him either. “We thanked him for taking the time to analyze the offer,” Hernandez said.