Sunday, March 25, 2012

Faith in the underdog: Memphis Grizzlies, Iverson, Arenas and Randolph


I have a soft spot for Allen Iverson and Gilbert Arenas. For the sports I really enjoy (Basketball and Wrestling) I've always been drawn to the human face behind the persona. Iverson has gone the way of Antoine Walker in recent weeks, a superstar suffering a massive fall from grace. Similarly Gilbert Arenas' reputation took a dive with his locker room gun fracas but never hit rock bottom.

I'd planned to see Iverson play for Beşiktaş whilst over in Europe but his contract was terminated before I got the chance. Arenas' zany personality appeals to me on a personal and sports marketing perspective, there's a reason his Undrcrwn/Adidas sneakers are my holy grails.

Both player have ties with the Memphis Grizzlies, a team I'm fond of. They'd been my mascot for my underdog Fantasy Team the last 3 years. I witnessed their gutsy game 1 win over the top-seeded Spurs at 4 in the morning whilst I was in Spain. Z-Bo's coming out party was one of my highlights of last year's playoffs.

The Grizzlies recent signing of Gilbert Arenas has been compared to the failed Iverson acquisition. Personally it chimes with the Grizzlies underdog persona and I hope Gilbert rehabilitates his image the same way Z-bo and Tony Allen have with their stellar play for the team
When the Memphis Grizzlies signed Gilbert Arenas, many Allen Iverson-related jokes were cracked. But GM Chris Wallace refuses to compare this situation to the 2009 Iverson disaster in Memphis. From the Commercial Appeal: "Gilbert was never the rock star that Allen was. Gilbert is in better physical condition than Allen was. Allen hadn’t done anything all summer" Wallace said...
Continuing with the underdog narrative, Interscope MC Don Trip recently released the single 'Allen Iverson' off his new mixtape, Guerrilla.
Read his interview with Complex explaining the song's genesis

Interview: Don Trip Talks "Allen Iverson" & His "Guerrilla" Mixtape
"When I first met Cool & Dre, they asked me who I looked up to growing up. I told them I looked up to Mike Tyson, Allen Iverson, and Tupac. I felt like I knew them or that I had grown up with them, and they raised me...

"I always felt that the way we use our celebrities is a little shady. We love them when they're hot, but when they start to fall down, we realize that they’re human and walk away from them."I always felt that the way we use our celebrities is a little shady. We love them when they’re hot, but when they start to fall down, we realize that they're human and walk away from them. I wanted to show how similar our situations are, and that I'm going through the same things."
VIDEO: Don Trip - "Allen Iverson" (prod. Cool & Dre)

- Listen to the Jeremy Lin rap song
- Listen to the Allen Iverson rap song

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