Iverson pulled out of the game for personal reasons, as his 3-year-old daughter, Messiah, battles an undisclosed illness. Iverson also has missed the Sixers' past five games, but the team expects him to play in Tuesday's home game against the Miami Heat.
Whether Iverson will play then, or in any other time this season, is unknown. But his decision to rejoin the Sixers was a no-brainer, according to Snow.
"I think it was a great move for him," the retired point guard said yesterday at the Dallas Convention Center after finishing his television duties for NBA TV with Kevin McHale and Rick Kamla. "It was the place he wanted to be and, obviously, they wanted him there. I think it was a good fit. I think he needed to be in a situation where he's wanted. And, obviously, he wanted to be there."
Since returning to the Sixers, Iverson has been a different player from the one with whom Snow teamed and went to the 2001 NBA Finals. He is averaging 14.7 points a game and is launching a little less than 12 shots a game.
Though those numbers are a far cry from when they were teammates, Snow doesn't think Iverson is done yet.
"I don't think he's in a situation where it's time for him to get out," he said. I think it's a situation where at his age, he has a reduced role, and things that maybe you thought you could do and think you can do maybe aren't possible.
"But it's really how we look at those players. Are we willing to accept them in their reduced roles even though they can't do what they did once before? I think if he scores 14, 15, 16 or 17 points a game, then we assume he should retire. And for most positions for a guy playing his minutes, those are very, very accepted numbers."
Snow said he is not surprised that Iverson is becoming more of a leader and role player.
"He said he could," Snow said. "He understands the process he went through, and knowing that he's playing in a place where he wants to be and where he's comfortable – being a team leader takes precedence. Sometimes it's the comfort and happiness for you and the peace of mind that's really a big part."
Rarely has a player garnered the kind of affection that Iverson had from Philly fans during his formidable years. The feelings were reciprocal, said Snow.
"It was love. They enjoyed him, he enjoyed them. The passion was there on his part, the passion was there on the fans' part," he said. "They knew at the end of the day they were going to have the best player on the court who went out there and played as hard as anyone."
When Iverson pulled out of the All-Star Game, it opened a spot on the East roster that was filled by New York Knicks center David Lee.
Lee said he was sleeping and "trying to ignore my phone," but after it vibrated three times, he picked up for Knicks president Donnie Walsh.
"He told me the good news and told me I had about 20 minutes before the car service was there to take me to the airport," Lee said. "I had a pretty quick turnaround."
Lee, who is averaging 20 points and 11.4 rebounds, feels for Iverson and what he is going through.
"I felt bad for the fact that his daughter is sick," Lee said.
"I didn't want anybody get hurt or anything like that to happen to get in. Obviously, it's out of my control, and I just want to say a prayer for his daughter and that he's doing OK, and thanks for the opportunity and I'll just try to make the most of it."
Durant on Durant
Oklahoma City forward Kevin Durant is making quite a name for himself in the NBA, as an All-Star in only his second season. His name is starting to be mentioned along with the likes of Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. But Durant still sees much improvement needed in his game.
"I've just got to continue to work and get better," said Durant, averaging 29.7 points, second in the league behind James' 29.9. "Yeah, I'm surprised at how fast my game's developed. But I'm learning the game. Each year, I've gotten better at learning the game and doing everything. I have a long ways to go to get to really where I want to be. But if I continue to work, the sky's the limit."
Phoenix Suns center Amare Stoudemire has been in the middle of just about every trade rumor. The 6-10 forward, now in his eighth season and averaging 21.2 rebounds and 8.6 assists, is making $16,378,325 this season and has a player option of around $17.7 million next season.
He said that if there is a trade, he wants to go to a winner. When asked about the possibility of landing in Philadelphia, a team that obviously is not winning, Stoudemire said, "I'd make them a winner."
New Orleans Hornets guard Chris Paul, on crutches after recent knee surgery, talked about what New Orleans has been like since the Saints won the Super Bowl on Sunday. "It's been crazy," he said. "With Mardi Gras coming up, that city is going to be nuts. I went to the parade. Seeing those guys in the floats and 800,000 people in the street, it gave me goose bumps" . . . By far, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James drew the most media attention. When James was walking in a hallway of the hotel where the media availability was, rookies Jonas Jerebko, of the Pistons, and Omri Casspi, of the Kings, looked like kids trying to get his attention. They didn't . . . The city of Dallas didn't deal well with its foot of snowfall from Thursday. Most of the city was deserted as many people just stayed home. *