Nets forward LaMarcus Aldridge announced his retirement from the NBA on Thursday. In a statement, he wrote, "For 15 years, I've put basketball first, and now it is time to put my health and family first."
Aldridge opened the 2020–21 season with the Spurs but agreed to part ways with the club in early March. In late March, he signed with the Nets and subsequently played in five games with Brooklyn.
Aldridge, 35, was inactive for each of the Nets' last two games. He said in his retirement statement that he played in his final game while dealing with an "irregular heartbeat."
"Later on that night, my rhythm got even worse which really worried me even more," Aldridge wrote. "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."
"The Nets organization fully supports LaMarcus' decision, and while we value what he has brought to our team during his short time in Brooklyn, his heath and well being are far more important than the game of basketball," Nets general manager Sean Marks said in a statement.
Aldridge was the No. 2 pick in the 2006 draft and played the first nine seasons of his career with the Trail Blazers. He retires from the NBA having made seven All-Star appearances and five All-NBA team appearances.
This season, he averaged 13.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, which are both his lowest marks since his rookie season.
"You never known when something will come to an end, so make sure you enjoy it everyday," Aldridge wrote. "I can truly say I did just that."