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The Best Allen Iverson Quotes About Overcoming Adversity and Hardship

“I want to look in the mirror and say I did it my way.”

An illustration of Allen Iverson during his time with the Philadelphia 76ers headlines our article about Iverson's best quotes ever
Credit-NBA/AP/Philadelphia 76ers/Joker Mag

Allen Iverson played 14 seasons in the NBA and earned the nickname “The Answer” during his time in the league.

He won several awards including Rookie of the Year in 1997, league MVP in 2001, and 11 All-Star Game nominations.

Born in Hampton, Virginia, A.I. came from a tough background.

The son of a 15-year-old single mother, Iverson’s life is a story of overcoming adversity from early on.

“There were times when Allen never knew where his next meal was going to be,” said Mike Bailey, his basketball coach at Bethel High School in Hampton.

“Here’s a kid who couldn’t take a bath because he had no running water because it had been turned off.”

Despite his small stature on the court and the challenges he faced off it, Iverson became one of the most prolific and influential players in NBA history.

Here are the best Allen Iverson quotes of all time – sourced from his post-game interviews, Hall of Fame speech, and media appearances throughout his career.

The Best Quotes From Allen Iverson

A quote from Allen Iverson that says: "I don’t train hard to be better than you. I train hard to be better than me yesterday."

1.) “I don’t train hard to be better than you. I train hard to be better than me yesterday.” – Allen Iverson

2.) “Life is short. I’m gonna be happy with mine.” – Allen Iverson

3.) “Only the strong survive.” – Allen Iverson

4.) “When you are not practicing, someone else is getting better.” – Allen Iverson

5.) “I’m not perfect. But I am trying every day to concentrate on being better.” – Allen Iverson

6.) “I’m just thinking like, if I was to play in this era where it’s wide open, if I can average 33 in a season, I’m gonna just take it up to 43. I know 10 points more.” Allen Iverson

7.) “Everyone else is taken up so why not be you?” Allen Iverson

8.) “I’m supposed to be the franchise player, and we in here talkin’ about practice…not a game, not a game, not a game. We talkin’ about practice.” – Allen Iverson

9.) “Anybody tell you that I miss practice if a coach says I miss practice and y’all hear it then that’s that I mean I might have missed one practice this year but if somebody says he doesn’t come to practice it can be one practice out of all the practices this year that’s enough if I can’t practice. I can’t practice, man, I’m hurt.” Allen Iverson

10.) “I play every game like it’s my last game. All that matters is that you go out there and play every game as if it was your last.” – Allen Iverson

11.) “I want to thank Coach Thompson for saving my life, for giving me the opportunity. I was recruited by every school in the country for football and basketball. And an incident happened in high school and all that was taken away. No other teams, no other schools would recruit me anymore. My mom went to Georgetown and begged him to give me a chance and he did.” – Allen Iverson

12.) “I lost the scoring title to Kobe the year he averaged 35 and I averaged 33.” Allen Iverson

13.) “I don’t wanna be Jordan, I don’t wanna be Bird or Isiah, I don’t want to be any of those guys. I want to look in the mirror and say I did it my way.” – Allen Iverson

14.) “When you work hard, good things happen.” – Allen Iverson

15.) “I’d rather have more heart than talent any day.” – Allen Iverson

Allen Iverson quote that says "I wasn't a point guard. I was a killer."

16.) “I wasn’t a point guard. I was a killer.” – Allen Iverson

17.) “I believe in my heart I’m the best player in the world. I’m just a scorer. I try to put the ball in the basket for my team. I’m just confident in my ability to play ball.”Allen Iverson

18.) “Mistakes happen. But after a while, you’ve got to stop making them happen twice.” – Allen Iverson

19.) “If you’re struggling with your shooting, then do the other things on the basketball court. Get steals, get assists, get rebounds. Do anything on the court to help the team win.” – Allen Iverson

20.) “You have to go through good times and bad times to get where you’re trying to go.” Allen Iverson

21.) “Either you give in, or you fight. That’s all I know, being where I’m from. You fight for what you want. You go after what you want. The only thing I could do was give up or keep fighting for what I wanted in life.” – Allen Iverson

22.) “I’m human. I’ve made mistakes along the way. I’ve been to jail three times…I went through what I went through because God said, ‘Go through it.’ That’s why I went through it. And I overcame it…I overcame all of that.” – Allen Iverson

23.) “My relationship with the fans in Philadelphia is like no other. Thank you and thank you all for the support over the years. Y’all let me grow. Y’all let me make my mistakes. Never jumped off the bandwagon, continued to support me like true fans are supposed to.” Allen Iverson

Editor’s Note: Is there an Allen Iverson quote we missed? Drop a comment below and we’ll get it added.

More quote collections you’d also like:

23 Michael Jordan Quotes To Unlock a Champion’s Mentality

The Most Inspirational Basketball Quotes Of All-Time

Written By

Ben Abel has been an avid sports fan since the 1980s. He has contributed to Sports Betting Dime, the Internet Baseball Writers Association of America Newsletter, and Joker Mag writing about hockey, baseball, and football as well as other sports. He lives in Vancouver, Canada.

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