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LaMarcus Aldridge signed with the Brooklyn Nets, hoping to win that elusive ring. Instead, a medical scare led to a surprising retirement announcement.
On Thursday morning, LaMarcus Aldridge released a statement announcing his retirement from the NBA. The statement revealed that he had suffered from an irregular heartbeat, which sparked the surprising decision.
“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.”
LaMarcus Aldridge was one of the most reliably effective big men of his era
Aldridge had only just joined the Brooklyn Nets after being bought out by the San Antonio Spurs. His decision will leave the Nets scrambling to fill a roster spot with another big man before the playoffs begin. Options will be limited this late in the season but they could definitely use another big body, particularly one with some defensive expertise.
Aldridge spent nine seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers and another six with the Spurs. For his career, he averaged 19.4 points, 8.2 rebounds and 2.0 assists, shooting 49.1 percent from the field. His post-game and sweet mid-range jumper made him an elite frontcourt scorer and he made seven All-Star and five All-NBA teams in his career. These things are always hard to assess numerically but Basketball-Reference estimates his Hall-of-Fame odds to be just over 50 percent.