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Iverson headed back to U.S. for leg surgery, denies retirement report

Allen Iverson

Former NBA player Allen Iverson of Besiktas Cola Turka reacts during their Turkish basketball league game against Fenerbahce Ulker in Istanbul, Turkey, Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010. (AP Photo/Ibrahim Usta)


Allen Iverson is coming back to the United States — but not to retire as a Turkish news service had reported earlier.

An MRI has found a very painful lesion on Iverson’s ankle and he is returning from Istanbul, Turkey, where he had been playing to the United States for surgery and medical care, his manager told the Associated Press.

“It has to be removed and tested to see if it’s benign or not,” said Iverson’s manager, Gary Moore. “Once that’s removed, Allen is going to look to rehabilitate his leg because the doctors tell him he’ll be out four to six weeks, he’s hoping to be able to play in the [Turkish league] playoffs.”

There is no date for the surgery other than “soon.”

Clearly, whether or not Iverson can return to play will depend on what the doctors find.

If he retires he would have to forfeit the remainder of his two-year, $4 million salary (amid reports he is broke, something he has strongly denied). This has potential to be much more serious than just about a basketball career, we hope for the best for Iverson and that he is back for the playoffs in Turkey.