“If I get the greatest player to ever play the game on me,” Allen Iverson once said in an interview with Philadelphia 76ers announcer Marc Zumoff. “I’m going to try my move on him.”

On March 12, 1997, with the defending champion Chicago Bulls making a stop in Philadelphia to take on the lowly 16-win 76ers, Iverson got his chance. Despite the team’s dismal record, Iverson was putting together one of the most spectacular rookie seasons in recent memory, featuring endless scoring barrages and highlight-reel moves (both below and above the rim). But on that night, he would not only take advantage of his chance, he’d essentially snatch the torch from his idol’s hands.

“I came off a screen and I heard (then-Bulls coach) Phil Jackson say his name,” Iverson recalled. “I backed up and I gave him a little one, and he went for it. And I was like, ‘Oh yeah, I got his ass now.’”

Sensing the moment materializing in front of their eyes, the Philadelphia crowd rose to its feet. Jordan was isolated at the top of the key on a hungry Iverson, who was sizing up his idol while wearing his signature blue and white Reebok Questions. Jordan bites on the killer crossover, Iverson hoists a jumper just beyond the elbow, nothing but net. The crowd went crazy. It was the biggest moment of the season, against the best team and player in the world.

“I really didn’t know, especially being that young, what I had done,” Iverson said, looking back at the moment when he truly arrived. “All of these years later, you got little kids walking up to me ‘Hey, you’re the guy that crossed Jordan.’”

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