Iverson to start for Sixers the season: coach

08:40, December 08, 2009      

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Allen Iverson will start for the Philadelphia 76ers in their home game against Denver and also the whole season, said Philadelphia coach Eddie Jordan on Monday.

Philadelphia 76ers guard Allen Iverson gestures during a news conference announcing his return to the 76ers in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania December 3, 2009. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)

Iverson will play his first game with Philadelphia since 2006 against Denver Nuggets, one of three teams he played for after leaving Philadelphia, on Monday night.

"I feel like I am home," Iverson said at shoot around. "Just seeing people I'm accustomed to seeing, seeing the reporters, seeing some of the fans when I go out to eat. Just the smell of Philadelphia when I go outside."

Iverson's not sure how many minutes he can play because of his limited basketball activity over the past year. His stint in Detroit was cut short with a back injury and he played only three games for Memphis this season.

Iverson said he has some concerns about playing in game condition.

"If I can't get my scoring on like I want to, I just want to do other things on the basketball court that will help us win," Iverson said.

The Sixers have lost nine straight games and hope Iverson can lead them back into the win column. He'll play against Denver.

Iverson, traded to the Nuggets in December 2006, always considered Philly home and dreamed of a return to the team he led to the 2001 NBA finals.

"In your dreams, you always hope for the best," he said. "That's what I'm doing. I love these people here. They know that. They love me back. Hopefully, it'll just be a great experience.

Iverson broke down in tears at his press conference after he signed a non-guaranteed deal with the 76ers last week.

Jordan said he'll likely play Iverson in short bursts.

Jordan said he envisioned eventually pairing Iverson with injured point guard Lou Williams in the backcourt.

Williams is out about six more weeks with a broken jaw. His injury sparked 76ers management to consider bringing back Iverson.

Rookie Jrue Holiday, who started for Williams, is out for Monday's game with a strained right rotator cuff.

Leading scorer Andre Iguodala will start after missing Sunday's practice with an ankle injury.

Source: Xinhua
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