An NBA official says that mercurial guard Allen Iverson has been shipped to his third team in roughly three years. On Monday, the Denver Nuggets sent the 33-year old Georgetown product to the Detroit Pistons for guard Chauncey Billups and forward Antonio McDyess (an ESPN News report also says that center Cheikh Samb is headed to Denver as well). The NBA official spoke on condition of anonymity because the trade has not been officially announced.
The Detroit Pistons were determined to shake up a core group of players that got bounced from the Eastern Conference Finals for a third straight year. Most expected a major deal would have come much sooner than this.
Iverson, a four-time NBA scoring champion with a career average of 27.7 points per game, is averaging just 18.7 points through three games this season with the Nuggets. But that can’t be the reason for the deal, this was in the works for quite some time and not dependent on Iverson’s production through three games.
While the Pistons did want to shake up their roster, the real reason could just be cap relief after this year. Iverson is in the final year of his contract, which pays him $21 million this year. Getting that kind of money off the books would free up the Pistons to do a lot of other things.