The Knicks, while in need of shoring up their backcourt, will not consider talking with Allen Iverson as they deem the former Sixers star too big of a gamble, reports Marc Berman of the New York Post. The Creative Artists Agency client made an appearance on Wednesday night in Philadelphia during Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals where he expressed his desire to get back into basketball. Iverson, 37 in June, has a history with Knicks head coach Mike Woodson as Woodson was an assistant coach to Larry Brown for two seasons while Iverson was with the Sixers.
Iverson last played professionally in 2010/2011 when he signed a two-year, $4MM contract to play for Turkish club Besiktas Cola Turka, the same franchise Deron Williams later called home during the 2011 NBA lockout. He managed to average 14.3 PPG and 4.7 APG in seven league games before returning to the United States in January 2011 after a calcium deposit in his calf required treatment from Dr. James Andrews. While Iverson thought he would be able to return to Turkey in time for the playoffs, the former Georgetown star has not seen the court of a professional game since suffering the injury.
Even if Iverson is not the answer, the Knicks still need to find help to build backcourt depth heading into next season. Knicks GM Glen Grunwald expressed the team's commitment to re-signing Jeremy Lin during Friday's conference call to announce Woodson's new contract, but the former Harvard star's return is not a guarantee. Berman suggests the Knicks will look to lesser guards to sign with the team's $2MM lower exception including Raymond Felton, Derek Fisher and Gary Neal. There is concern that if Steve Novak's Bird rights aren't restored then the Knicks won't be able to afford to retain him or J.R. Smith, who is presumed to be gone if he doesn't pick up his $2.5MM player option for next season.