Heat veteran Shane Battier has already said this would “probably” be his last year, but it appears that his pending retirement is now a certainty. Battier told reporters including Ethan J. Skolnick of Bleacher Report last night that his mind is made up (Twitter link). “It would take an act of God to change it and that act of God hasn’t come,” said Battier.
Battier is playing out the last year of the 3-year, $9.4MM deal he signed with Miami after the team lost in the 2011 Finals. The small forward has been instrumental in the Heat’s two subsequent championships, providing both the long-range shooting ability and defensive versatility that coach Erik Spoelstra has needed to fit his offensive and defensive schemes built around the unique strengths of LeBron James and Chris Bosh.
Battier has long been considered a player whose value isn’t evident in the box score, and was an early darling of the advanced metrics community. Still, his performance has waned of late. He spent much of last year’s title run out of the rotation, and is averaging career lows in minutes, points, and field goal percentage this season.