Home / Sports / Allen Iverson responds perfectly to Bryce Harper's No. 3 Phillies jersey

Allen Iverson responds perfectly to Bryce Harper's No. 3 Phillies jersey

CLEARWATER, Fla. (USA) – It was a day when Bryce Harper seemed so close behind when, as a 14-year-old at home in Las Vegas, he thrilled the Travel Ball Circuit with his tape-set homers and landed the cover of Sports Illustrated at the age of 16.

Harper officially became the owner of the richest contract in American sports history when the Phillies announced their 13-year, $ 330-million deal in a lukewarm press conference at Spectrum Field Saturday afternoon.

The event ended with a week of intense negotiations between the Phillies and Harper. The Phillies had persecuted the free-agent slugger for weeks, but made an official offer only on Sunday after both sides had gathered extensive information. There was optimism to conclude a deal on Monday. It was followed by uncertainty on Tuesday and pessimism on Wednesday (see story) .

Finally, the two sides agreed on Thursday and: "The maestro got his harp."

Thus, Agent Scott Boras designated Phillies as managing partner John Middleton's prosecution of the 26-year-old Harper.

Boras always had a way with words, not to mention negotiations. In November he launched "Harper's Bazaar" and this week landed in Philadelphia. Not San Francisco. Not Los Angeles. Not back in Washington. Harper wanted to be paid, they say, but he also wanted something else: to stay in one place for a long time. His wife Kayla supported that. You could say, besides cash ̵

1; stupid money – he has this opportunity for 13 years in Philadelphia.

"In addition to the money, years were important to me in being able to take root and grow family," Harper said. "In the end I could have some kids and they could say they are from Philly."


Harper plays with a grimace, a scowl and a mocking competition. There was no Saturday. He smiled slightly – yes, we know you would smile too, if … – and was very articulate in saying the kind of things Philadelphia fans would like to hear.

He called J.T. Realmuto, the new catcher of the Phillies, his favorite player in baseball.

He has transgressed the limits of manipulation by openly wishing that a particular Millville, New Jersey player could become a Phillip in two years.

I did not want one of the famous exit clauses that his husband Boras had invented years ago, because he agreed to be Phillie and win in Philadelphia.

"For me it's all about winning," he said. "That's what you remember."

He said he really wanted to hang out with the Phanatic. He said Gritty was "ugly". (Do not worry, orange guy, that was a compliment, we think.)

When his parents were sitting a few feet away, he talked about his upbringing.

"I'm from a working-class family," Harper said. "My dad woke up at three in the morning to tie up reinforcement every day at 130 degrees in Vegas, and here I get my work ethic, that's what I want to do every day, I want to work hard, I want to Doing what I can to extend my career, play for a very long time, and be successful for a very long time. "

He has interviewed Tom Brady on the keys several times In the '40s he played (and produced).

On the Saturday night of dusk, the Phillies had sold more than 220,000 tickets since they had reached an agreement with Harper on Thursday.

But Middleton does not consider Harper as a marketing tool. (And not even GM Matt Klentak, who had a big winter with two former MVPs in Harper and Andrew McCutchen, a shortstop in Jean Segura and the best catcher in baseball in Realmuto.) The remodeling is over. It's time to get Middleton's bubbling trophy back.

Middleton told Boras about it in a meeting last month.

"I said," Scott, I want to tell you something: I'm not interested in talking about marketing dollars, selling tickets, billboards, concessions, "Middleton said in a brief interview with reporters shortly after the press conference. I said, "There's only one reason why I'm talking to you. I think this guy can help us win, and that's all I care about. & # 39; I said, "I have earned enough money in my life, I do not have to earn anymore." I said, "My franchise has risen dramatically in the last 25 years, I do not need it to go any further, if so, it's good, I'm here to win, and I think your type can help me win That's all I want to talk about. "

" In Philadelphia, you've got a winning product on the field, it's 1,000 percent behind you, that's all I care about, and honestly, everything What I'm really interested in is getting this trophy – I can not say the right word – but this trophy. "

Harper said his goal was to do just that.

He will strive to achieve this goal. He bore his name in No. 34, but he went to the rafters in honor of Hall of Famer Roy Halladay.

"Roy Halladay should be the last Phillie wearing the No. 34," said Harper The Ball Garden, where the pitcher was remembered 15 months ago in a moving memorial service.

Harper chose No. 3 because it was the number his father and brother carried in high school.

The fans in the right field of the Citizens Bank Park should be prepared to see a lot of them in the next 13 seasons.

It all starts on the 28th of March, the opening day.

"I'm looking forward to this 1:05 against the Braves," said Bryce Harper

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