The Memphis Commercial Appeal is saying Iverson will sign with the Grizzlies. We can now go on freaking out over Raymond Felton's contract situation.
UPDATE 7:50pm -- Please excuse the delay on reaction. Crazy day at work...
I like what Turtle had to say in the comments earlier:
[Iverson] is essentially guaranteed to boost fan and national interest in the Grizzlies (following the ‘All press is good press’ corollary), and we’re not making the playoffs this year anyhow, so why the hell not? Its closer to 99% good to 1% bad. In the 1% chance that he returns to superstar-like form, Iverson will blow our draft.
For the Bobcats, it's slightly different, of course. They're hoping to buck for the playoffs this year, whereas the Grizzlies are still biding their time and waiting for their youth to develop. I guess I came around to thinking that Iverson would be the right kind of gamble for a team like the Bobcats, on the outer edge of playoff contention. But I also see that going to the Grizz gives him a chance to reestablish himself in a low-stakes environment; all else being equal, Charlotte provides both more potential for AI to redeem his reputation and more potential to bury it.
This goes back to a point I've been making since Jason Richardson was traded. I understand that the team is bleeding money, but without a full blown superstar in his prime the team's long term health is its short term health. By that, I mean that if they can't offer a title contender, they should be offering hope that those good times are just around the corner. Selling out for the six-through-eight seed is not a hopeful strategy. Maybe signing Iverson would have improved the team in the present and brought press attention to Charlotte, but if we're going to have real hope, we'll need to know if DJ Augustin and Gerald Henderson are a starting caliber full time back court. That might happen now, and it definitely wouldn't have happened this season with AI in the fold.