Burke and Iverson

Submitted by Alumnus93 on March 10th, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Since I first saw Burke play, more and more does his game remind me of Allen Iverson's game. I'm no basketball expert, and perhaps its the similar sinze and position, but when I see him play, the first thing that comes to mind is Iverson.

I remember Iverson being great at Georgetown but what I don't remember is how good he was as a true freshman, and wonder if anyone can chime in on Burke's progress at this point vs Iverson as a true freshman. 

Regardless, I think Burke will be at Iverson's level when he entered the NBA after his senior year. Burke is a bona-fide star....   and I digress...... by the way, so is Hardaway, but in a few ways Burke's success has masked Hardaway's skills....ie say if Burke wasn't on our team, we'd be relying alot more on Hardaway and you've seen bursts of absolute dominance by Hardaway......  Both Burke and Hardaway are NBA locks.....and I am happy.




March 10th, 2012 at 9:47 AM ^

Burke is a great teammate and puts people in the best situation to succeed. He takes points when it's presented to him. Way better shooting percentage, less points, but fairly comparable




1994-95 Georgetown Big East 30 32.2 6.8 17.3 .390 1.2 5.0 .232 5.7 8.3 .688 3.3 4.5 3.0 0.2 4.4 2.6 20.4


2011-12 Michigan Big Ten 32 36.2 5.3 12.0 .446 1.7 4.6 .372 2.7 3.7 .735 3.4 4.6 0.9 0.4 2.6 1.6 15.1


Mr. Rager

March 10th, 2012 at 10:44 AM ^

AI got to the line way more.  Burke shoots way better.  There is no comparison here.  Stupid, imo.  

Ed: We are talking about pound for pound the greatest player to ever play in the NBA.  And Trey Burke, who is fucking awesome in his own right.  He is no Allen Iverson.  Not as fast, not as stupid with the ball.  But still not as good.  Iverson was the #1 overall pick and lived up to that throiughout his career.  No way Burke hits that.  Get your head out of your ass, people.  


March 10th, 2012 at 11:20 AM ^

Alex English was a great scorer as well.  Doesn't mean I'd build a team around either guy.  Trey Burke, on the other hand, is a team player and a winner.  Can AI say that?  Did he win anywhere?  Yeah, neither did Alex English.


March 10th, 2012 at 11:39 AM ^

Woah woah woah. When Iverson got the 76ers the best record in the East and to the NBA finals who was the second best player on that team? Theo Ratliff? Aaron McKie? Eric Snow? Those guys would be a stretch as a 6th man for a title contender. But yeah be unimpressed.


March 10th, 2012 at 11:48 AM ^

Woah woah woah.  When Alex English (at 27.9 ppg) led the Denver Nuggets to a 1st place finish in the Midwest Division before eventually losing to the Lakers in the conference finals, who was the second best player on the team?  Calvin Natt?  Wayne Cooper? T.R. Dunn?  Those guys would be a stretch for names that anyone remembers.  And yeah, I'm not at all impressed by Iverson.  Great individual talent lost in a team game.  He should have played tennis.

Blue boy johnson

March 10th, 2012 at 11:55 AM ^

Stats aside, the reason people are aghast to Burke/Iverson comparisons is because they are horrible comparisons. Argue all you want about the selfishness of Iverson, but he was undeniably one of the most talented players to ever step foot on an NBA court. End of story. Burke, for all his greatness, ain't there and will never be there. It's just a bad comparison.


March 10th, 2012 at 12:11 PM ^

A bad comparison indeed.  No doubt.  Iverson was certainly one of the most talented players in the game, but I don't think "talent" and "best" are equivalent.  Iverson is also one of the most flawed.  Of course, Burke has a ton of time before he can even be judged on his college career, let alone his NBA career.  

Blue boy johnson

March 10th, 2012 at 12:58 PM ^

I have no idea what Iverson's stats are/were, I am not basing my opinion on Iverson's stats. Skill wise and talent wise, Iverson is off the charts. It is not something that anyone would argue.

You don't like Iverson as a player, that is understandble but not the point.

You may or may not know, before the Piston's won with Isaiah, dumb asses were saying much the same thing, "you can't win with Isaiah", it was some of the stupidest shit I ever heard in my life.


March 10th, 2012 at 1:06 PM ^

I hear you on nearly all of that.  Iverson...great stats, skill and talent but not a winner.  If we're comparing Iverson to Isaiah, however, there's an easy response to the notion that Zeke wasn't a winner.  Indeed, the point is that the Pistons did win with Zeke (repeatedly).  No one ever won with Iverson.  


March 10th, 2012 at 2:26 PM ^

Your entire opinion of Iverson is jaded by talking heads who used Iverson as public enemy number one to push the whole thug perception of the NBA, but the fact of the matter is, that Iverson was no more "thuggish" than Isaiah Thomas. He just had more tattoos, and spoke with an urban twinge.

I'm judging them by how they performed, not by all of the erroneous bullshit that you are taking into account.

Iverson was a horrible teammate? Show me examples.

Kobe Bryant is a far worse teammate. Jordan punched other players in practice. Wilt Chamberlain is far and away the worst teammate of all time. Check that, Rick Barry might have him beat in that regard. Oscar Robertson was described as being generally unapproachable by coaches and players alike. Vince Carter quit openly during games.

Iverson didn't practice as hard?

Shaq was a notorious loafer in practice and never worked out. He would play himself into shape. Charles Barkley never bothered to take care of himself or practice very hard either.

Iverson was a thug/bad person? This is an incredibly overblown, and generally false perception of him.

At least he wasn't using cocaine openly like David Thompson. He never allegedly raped anyone like Kobe. Didn't have the domestic abuse issues of Jason Kidd. Was nowhere near as self absorbed as Wilt. All of Shawn Kemp and Karl Malone's illegitimate children say, "Hi." Rick Barry was known around the league for being borderline racist, and treating everyone horribly throughout his career.

Isaiah was a horribly poor sport, and had some of the most ghastly displays of sportsmanship with his freezing out of Jordan, and his, "If Larry Bird weren't white, he'd be just another good player," statement after losing to the Celtics in '87. He also was left off the Dream Team for a reason (nobody liked him, wanted to deal with his attitude or play with him). All of that is before you even mention his off the court issues.

I could go on and on, and on, but the point being, that virtually every great player in the NBA has had issues, both on and off the court. Iverson's issues have always been singled out and overblown, especially when put into the context of other all-time greats.

One thing I will say, is that I did mention a number of champions when making my comparisons, and obviously winning a championship affords a player a bit of a free pass of sorts. However, knowing the media, and a number of so called basketball "fans'" disdain for Iverson, I doubt he would have been afforded any such passes.

Former teammates and coaches generally describe Iverson as a fiercely loyal teammate, devoted family man, someone who always left everything he had on the court, who had one of the shadiest entourages in sports history. They also describe him as being one of the most self aware, articulate, and complex athletes they've ever met.

Iverson is a prime example of how media can negatively sway public opinion and perception of an athlete. I've always felt that the anti-Iverson crowd was primarily composed of older white fans and media members who had no hope of understanding him, nor did they want to.




March 10th, 2012 at 10:19 AM ^

I agree. I love Trey but Iverson was a freak. One of the quickest human being I have ever seen and he could jump with mad hops. The kind of finish where Trey is laying up with a finger roll, Iverson would dunk with authority, eve with almost no run to set it up. Trey is not in the same zip code athletically with Iverson.


March 10th, 2012 at 9:47 AM ^

Iverson had several impressive dunks over bigs in his college career.  I think Burke is a great player and can get to the basket well, but I think we may be jumping the gun a little bit on that comparison. 

Raback Omaba

March 10th, 2012 at 9:48 AM ^

Seems like a pretty lofty comparison, because when you take out all the not-so great about Iverson's career, they seem like pretty similar players......

But I think it's jumping the gun at this point - Let's see if Burke can sustain his success, because Sophomore slumps are pretty common



March 10th, 2012 at 9:55 AM ^

Jumping the gun?  Sophomore slump?  No chance of a soph slump... none... notice that the more the clutch, the more Burke makes the shot or the play... this is a true freshman we are talking about, with no big man to speak of.   The only difference to me between Burke and Iverson is that Iverson was more of selfish player....or rather, that in Belien's system, Burke cannot operate freely as Iverson was allowed to do.  Don't discount this. I guarantee you had Iverson played as a true frosh in Belien's system, that he wouldnt have averaged 20 pts, and wouldve averaged alot closer to Burke's 15.

Mr. Yost

March 10th, 2012 at 9:52 AM ^

Burke does show flashes of Iverson with his handle and his ability to create at times. But Iverson was maybe the best scorer this world has EVER SEEN! Iverson could create his own shot whenever he wanted and many people overlook his talent because of the on and off-court distractions.

Offensive Burke reminds me more of a Chris Paul. He just doesn't hit the boards like Paul.

Iverson's game was completely different. He didn't need or want a pick and roll like Burke uses. Iverson was going to break you down off the dribble and get to the rim. Period. And when he developed a step back, it was over. The man single handedly carried a below average Sixers team to the Finals. LeBron and only a few others can say that. One man in the NBA shouldn't be able to do that. (And don't ever say MJ did, because Pippen is one of the 50 greatest players).

Burke's a point guard first. Iverson was a shooting guard first.

03 Blue 07

March 10th, 2012 at 1:05 PM ^

I strongly disagree with your assertion. When Jordan was gone, Pippen showed how good he was. In 1994, especially, he played out of position at PF because Kukoc wasn't yet physically strong enough to do so, and was one of the best 3 players in the NBA, IMO (Hakeem and David Robinson that season are the other two; again, just my opinion). Pippen could and did do it all- passing, steals, rebounds, scoring efficiently, defending 4 positions.


March 10th, 2012 at 9:53 AM ^

No. Iverson is not a winner. He's not a team player. He never was. I was in grad school at Gtown And watched him play (after watching the fab five at Michigan). He's impressive as an individual but he's not anything for a "team" player to aspire to.


March 10th, 2012 at 12:31 PM ^

This is a stupid talk radio meme that developed when Iverson was older and unable to do the things he used to be able to do on the court. As so often happens with the all time greats, Iverson was the last to know.

Young Iverson would have done, and did, do everything in his power to win.


March 10th, 2012 at 2:34 PM ^


A lot of people conveniently forget that Iverson was saddled with one of the worst front offices in the NBA,  had horrible teammates throughout his career in PHiladelphia, and outside of Larry Brown, had horrible coaches.

They generally forget this because it doesn't fit in with their preconceived notions of Iverson being a selfish, me first player, and horrible teammate.

The funny thing is that only media people were saying that about him. All of his teammates and coaches loved him. Larry Brown loves AI, and has really only ever had positive things to say about him. They have a great personal relationship.

No player is an island. Look at LeBron in Celveland. Dwight Howard in Orlando. Hell, everyone loves to gush about Kobe's will to win, but he flat out, 100%, gave up on the Lakers in the playoffs on multiple occasions. Kobe was petulant and his teams were terrible, post Shaq.


March 10th, 2012 at 1:48 PM ^

It could be a talk radio "meme" (a word in itself that's possibly as played as "that's what she said"), or it could be what plenty of folks thought when watching AI play at Gtown.  I know I wasn't the only one in Landover thinking that he'd be a scorer and nothing more for his entire (great, but not team great career).


March 10th, 2012 at 9:58 AM ^

but i have to login just to reply to this.


Iverson was one of the most overrated players to ever step on the floor.  I remember watching him in college and thinking, wow, i have never seen a kid this fast.  He would literally blow by anyone at will, then get to the rim, and throw some shot up i never seen before, sometimes hitting the bottom of the rim and boucning back and hitting someone in the head.

He was the worst team player EVER.  You will NEVER win a championship by taking 50% of your teams shots, and shooting 40% (many years LESS than that!).  NEVER.  Unless of course, Wilt Chamberlain is your center.  I do not understand how some NBA execs have jobs.  

Burke is not as fast as Iverson.  Not even close.  But Burkes decision making, shooting ability at the same stage and demeanor are on another level.  This comparison could not even be farther apart.

However, i must say that it is difficult for me to think of a player Burke comapres with.  There just arent many like him, he is unique in all ways combined.


March 10th, 2012 at 10:13 AM ^

I login all the time but I just had to tell you.




Seriously AI was hardly an overated player, anytime I watch replays of his Georgetown days I am in awe of the skills he possessed at that age. I would place him above Kobe/LeBron in terms of ability to create and easily the best pure scorer of the bunch. 

I think your taking way to much stock is off the court transgressions as well as the fact he was a crappy teammate. 

AI palyed for AI and his entourage considering they've since bankrupted him. 


March 10th, 2012 at 10:27 AM ^


The guy is a sure 1st ballot HOF and probably would make the all-time NBA top 50 players list if you created one today. And he is overrated??? Are you kidding me?

If LeBron never left the Cleveland, he would have to dominate the team offense like AI did. Would that mean LeBron is overrated too?

I understand he was not everyone's favorite player, but you have to be a complete basketball moron to say AI was not one of the all time greats.