He was undervalued and underappreciated during his eight year tenure with the Philadelphia 76ers, the only NBA home he has ever known. While it’s the general consensus that 76ers fans — perhaps — didn’t appreciate Iguodala for what he could offer, it doesn’t mean he won’t be missed by that fan base. However, it’s less about the past and more about Andre’s new home in Denver.
Andre Iguodala is a part of the Denver Nuggets.
Yes, I still get all excited like an adolescent girl every time I type that. Andre will be part of the run-and-gun Nuggets, the Nuggets who so often get burned at the perimeter by such teams as the Oklahoma City Thunder. Now, with Andre who will help tame Kevin Durant from downtown, it will aid in Denver’s fight for a top 4 seed this year, more than we can fully grasp at the moment.
The real question is who is Andre Iguodala?
Sure we know about his incredible perimeter defense as mentioned before and we also know how Sixers fans felt about AI9, but what else can we learn about him?
As aforementioned, AI9 has spent his 8 seasons in the NBA with the Philadelphia 76ers with a fanbase –as it seemed to outsiders — cared less about his incredible defense, but were waiting in the shadows for when he botched a pair of free throws or bricked a three-pointer. Despite that, Andre Iguodala gave his heart and soul to basketball — as many players do – and this past season he had his best year to date.
He secured his first All-Star appearance and led the 76ers to their first playoff series win since 2003, in which Sixers fans finally gave Iguodala the accolades he so desired.
His season-to-season averages have looked like this:
- 2004-05: 9 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 3 assists per game, 49.3 % FG, 33.1% 3P
- 2005-06: 12.3 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game, 50% FG, 35.4% 3P
- 2006-07: 18.2 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 5.7 rebounds per game, 44.7% FG, 31% 3P
- 2007-08: 19.9 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game, 45.6% FG, 32.9% 3P
- 2008-09: 18.8 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 5.3 assists per game, 47.3% FG, 30.7% 3P
- 2009-10: 17.1 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 5.8 assists per game, 44.3% FG, 31% 3P
- 2010-11: 14.1 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game, 44.5% FG, 33.7% 3P
- 2011-12: 12.4 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 5.5 assists per game, 45.4% FG, 39.4% 3P
Despite his enigmatic personality, Andre Iguodala is an upgrade for Denver and Nuggets fans are lucky to view his crazy athleticism, slashing, and his versatility, which are enormous upsides for Denver and specifically George Karl’s fast system.
Denver ranked 29th last season in point allowed and Denver’s defense was abysmal at best, but now that Iguodala is part of the Nuggets team, fans can expect not to be on the bottom of the defensive barrel.
Andre Iguodala is a professional in a league that is riddled with players that don’t take the game seriously and often find themselves on TMZ or Media Take Out, Andre seems to put basketball first above the culture of basketball.
Sixers fans have reached out to me to express how much they did appreciate AI9, and are thrilled he’s going to a team such as Denver, and that Andre is a classy guy.
In the past few years, Denver fans have put up with J.R. Smith’s and Kenyon Martin’s antics, and Andre Iguodala will be a welcome change.
I’m ready for Iguodala.