Moore said he told Iverson to consider life after basketball. In November 2009, Iverson played in three games with the Memphis Grizzles before being released, and the Sixers brought him back for 25 games. In his final NBA appearance, Feb. 20, 2010, he scored 13 points in a 32-point loss to the Chicago Bulls. His career ended abruptly, without closure.
Said Nuggets Coach George Karl: “Finding his last chapter of his career never happened.”
“They don’t want you anymore”
Iverson kept living as if another contract was imminent, and Tawanna struggled to curb his spending. According to a bank statement submitted in the divorce, the couple’s checking account was overdrawn by more than $23,000 in July 2011. In a single day, $23,255.36 was deducted – at a diamond store, a hat shop, a steakhouse and a hotel.
Tawanna testified that her checks bounced that month when she paid for housing and electricity. She sold jewelry and Tiaura’s car to pay for household expenses, including school clothes and supplies.
Before their home in Denver was foreclosed, Tawanna testified, she sold more jewelry at a pawn shop to pay toward debt. Iverson owed thousands to a Georgia home builder, was hit with tax liens, and his wages were garnished to settle a nearly $860,000 balance with a jeweler.
The public image for years had been of a bad boy tamed by his growing family sitting near the baseline. The truth was that Iverson was often an absentee husband and father.
Tawanna testified that during a 2009 family vacation in Orlando, Iverson spent evenings with a friend while his family made plans without him. On the day they were to fly home, Iverson nursed a hangover in a van, lying on the floor with a foot draped on the seat. While their children saw a movie, Tawanna sat for hours with her husband, afraid if he was left alone the driver would take photographs.
Another time, she said, Iverson left his children alone in a hotel room during a weekend at a water park. Tawanna picked them up at 2 a.m., one of the kids still in her swimsuit, with no sign of Iverson. “I always thought that my kids needed their father,” she’d testify later. “And what I’ve learned is that they don’t need him if he’s going to be that destructive in their lives.”
Iverson kept waiting for NBA teams to call. Last August, Iverson’s son Deuce, now 15, enrolled in a Pennsylvania school and families were invited to group counseling. Tawanna testified that Iverson skipped most of the sessions, including a lunch with his son. During a meeting he did attend, the speaker told the children about success, and how Donald Trump had seized opportunities.