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As I watch Briante Weber playing basketball for the VCU Rams, I also think of Allen Iverson. There are so many similarities in the two young men. They both hail from Virginia, both have much promise, much talent, the potential for greatness and they both have “gifted hands”. Hands that could take the basketball from an opponent, as easy as it would take candy from a baby. The same hands will soar and score over any obstacle that stood in his way. It was sad watching Briante lay on the court in pain the other night while playing against the University of Richmond. Not so much for the fact that he was only 12 steals away from setting a new record in all of college basketball. Not the fact that the injury could have ended his college career. Not even the fact, that the game was being viewed on national television. No what makes it sad is the fact that like Allen Iverson all Briante Weber ever wanted to do was play basketball.  

I saw Iverson’s development first hand, from the time that he was a kid all the way to his professional career that will surely end with an induction into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame. I see the potential for the same type of greatness in Weber.   Like Iverson, Weber’s desire to play is unmeasured. However he plays the game at a level that far exceeds anyone playing college basketball today.   Combine that unmeasured desire and the God Given talent to defend, score and make everyone around him better, there lies the potential I speak of. The difference between the two is the fact that Allen Iverson is now retired from the NBA. Among his many accomplishments included, NBA Scoring Champion, Leader in Steals and Minutes Played, (which was done several times throughout his career). He was a League MVP, 2-Time All-Star Game MVP, Rookie of the Year and All-NBA 1st, 2nd and 3rd Team Selection. The future of Briante Weber is before him. The injury that he sustained is simply a message to the world to look out, because the best of him is yet to come. Just as when the ability to play the game that was taken from Iverson made him stronger before his dream was realized. The same thing can happen for Weber. Any setback that one goes through in life should be looked upon as a setup for a comeback. However, the comeback is always much greater than the setback. Through hard work I have seen many successfully recover from this injury. Weber should be no different!

So for anyone who is about to give up on his ability to comeback, you better think again. That would be the biggest mistake ever made. The same “mecurical wunderkind” that shocked the world with the ability to comeback years ago will come again, and his name is Briante Weber. “ God’s Gifted Hands”.

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