A Tribute To A.I.

By Eric D. Graham
Updated: March 29, 2008

NORTH CAROLINA — On March 19, 2008, Allen Iverson played his first game in “In the City of Brotherly Love” since being traded to the Denver Nuggets in December 2006.

Oddly, the 76ers fans’ metaphysically embraced him like the biblical account of the “prodigal son” as A.I. blew imaginary kisses to his loyal fans before eventually kneeling down to kiss the 76ers logo at center court.

In the spirit of Hip-Hop, I dedicate this to one of the greatest basketball player in the NBA.

Allen Iverson aka the wound warrior.

Street soldier. True baller.

Our “little” brother. Our “little” Lion King.

The swagger in his walk. Made his chain swing.

From side-to-side. Praised and crucified.

But still I Rise. Look at the pain in his eyes.

Hat-tilted to the side. It’s the Return of Jedi Code name A.I. “Do or Die” Top ten. Dead or Alive Cause this 76er could light-up the Sky.

Like the 4th of July.

Our little Tupac with a wicked jump shot.

Harassed by the Hip-hop cops.

So skinny and slim. In an over-sized pair of Tims.

But the ladies still love him.

The Ghetto made him crazy.

Mamma’s baby. Daddy’s maybe.

Criticized for missing practice.

Baptized by John the Baptist.

The realist. Real Philly “Kats” can feel this.

Simply the best. The Star shines in the East Even upon the West. Take heed to the Words That I Manifest. God Bless.

Jesus Christ. The Kid is nice.

He is battered, bruised, and tattooed But he refused to lose Even when the cheers turned to boos.

We still loved this dude.

Because he was us, Is us, So Strong. So Tough.

The World is not Enough, //<![CDATA[ //]]> They wanted him locked up In Handcuffs His Afro was his halo.

My Hero. Your Heru.

He is too good to be true.

He looks like me and you.

Loved by a Few.

Hated by Many.

He gave the NBA street credibility.

The true King of Philly.

He rocked African braids and a do-rag.

Let his pants sag.

On the court, I love the way he zig-zagged.

I don’t mean to brag But Damn he’s good.

He is loved in the hood.

Embraced by the streets I loved the way he played the game With the bounce of a Hip-Hop beat.

His killer cross-over left Jordan bend over biting his own tongue.

Forever young.

Competition is none.

Philly’s favorite son.

Allen Iverson.

From one brother to another. I love ya.