Brooklyn Nets big man LaMarcus Aldridge, 35, announced his sudden retirement from the NBA on Thursday on his Instagram account.
Aldridge said he played his last NBA game on April 10 against the Lakers while dealing with an irregular heartbeat: “Though I’m better now, what I felt with my heart that night was still one of the scariest things I’ve experienced.”
Here’s the full statement:
Today, I write this letter with a heavy heart.
My last game, I played while dealing with an irregular heartbeat. Later on that night my rhythm got even worse, which really worried me even more.
The next morning, I told the team what was going on and they were great getting me to the hospital and getting me checked out.
Though I’m better now, what I felt with my heart that night was still one of the scariest things I’ve experienced.
With that being said, I’ve made the difficult decision to retire from the NBA. For 15 years, I’ve put basketball first, and now, it is time to put my health and family first.
I’m thankful for everything this game has given me: the great memories, including all the ups and the downs, and the friendships I’ve made and will keep with me forever. I thank Portland for drafting a skinny, Texas kid and giving him a chance. The city of Portland has given me some unforgettable years.
They will always remain in my heart. I want to thank the Spurs for letting me into the family and giving me 5 fun years. Last but not least, I want to thank Brooklyn. You wanted me for me. In a game that’s changing so much, you asked me to come and just do what I do which was good to hear. I’m sorry it didn’t get to last long, but I’ve definitely had fun being a part of this special group.
You never know when something will come to an end, so make sure you enjoy it everyday. I can truly say I did just that.
Aldridge was a seven-time All-Star and five-time All-NBA selection over 15 seasons, spending the majority of his time with the Portland Trail Blazers. He is Portland’s all-time leading rebounder (5,434) and has scored the third-most points (12,562) in franchise history. He averaged just over 19 points and eight rebounds per game throughout his career.
Courtesy: CBS Sports