By PHIL JASNER
Jerry Stackhouse played a little more than one season with the 76ers as
a teammate of Allen Iverson. They were both too young, too frisky, too
determined to be "the man." And they didn’t have a point guard.
Stackhouse ended up having a long, solid career with Detroit, Washington and Dallas. But he has a strong feel for whether Iverson and the Sixers could mesh again.
"It’s one of the few places where it could work," Stackhouse said during a break from his Sirius radio show. "From what I’ve read, the guys in the locker room are willing and say they would enjoy playing with him. That could make it the perfect spot."
Stackhouse is 35, 1 year older than Iverson, trying to decide whether he wants to take one more shot as a player, either as a sub with a top team or as a mentor with a young, upcoming team.
"He’s not the same player he was," Stackhouse said. "He can’t fool anybody with that."
He also, all too well, understands what Iverson is feeling.
"I still have the urge to play," he said. "I know I can compete and play. Do I want to? It’s something I’m battling."
He sees the Sixers adding Iverson as a risk/reward situation.
"You don’t know whether the reward will be as great as the risk," he said.
"When he was leading the league in scoring, when he was the MVP, young guys on other teams would look at him in awe. The young guys in the league now look at him and say, ‘I can beat him off the dribble.’ He was never a great defender, and he doesn’t have the same [first] step to get past them. And he’s not a spot-up shooter."
While the Sixers and Iverson are deciding, Stackhouse knows what the fans want.