I still remember where I was when I got the news that Allen Iverson would be joining the Denver Nuggets. I remember the Nuggets dominating the national sports news cycle for days, weeks, and even months. There was so much buzz and excitement that came with adding one of the most exciting and dynamic scorers that the league had ever seen. I was young and didn’t think about the X’s and O’s of basketball as much as I do now. The Nuggets were my team and, while players like Carmelo Anthony, Nene, and Kenyon Martin had made the Nuggets more relevant than they had been in a decade, it wasn’t until Iverson joined the team that the Nuggets became “cool.”
Indeed, many current Nuggets fans trace their fanhood back to this day in 2006. At Denver Stiffs, we constantly meet new fans from around the globe that talk about how they fell in love with the team once Iverson arrived. Chances are that if you are reading this, you remember that day as well.
Radio pundits and cable sports anchors wondered how Melo and A.I. would share the basketball or if the new “thuggets” were too undisciplined to succeed in the NBA. But fans like me didn’t care about that. This team, which was already on the rise, just became a marquee team around the league. Years of receiving backpage content and 30-second highlights at the end of SportsCenter were finally over. The Nuggets were front page material and would be as long as A.I. was here.
Iverson didn’t bring playoff success or championships but, ten years later, it almost doesn’t matter. Iverson made the Nuggets fun and brought even more fans back to Pepsi Center. There were 50-point games and highlight reel plays for two seasons and on any given night, the Nuggets were capable of beating anybody.
So here’s to that special day ten years ago that helped put Denver on the map. And here’s to one of the most iconic teams in Denver Nuggets history.