Tony Parker Announces Retirement

Longtime NBA point guard Tony Parker has decided to retire from the NBA, he tells Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated. Parker, who had spoken in the past about wanting to play 20 seasons, will instead call it a career after spending 18 years in the NBA.

“I’m going to retire,” Parker told Spears. “I decided that I’m not going to play basketball anymore.”

Parker, the 28th overall pick in the 2001 draft, made his debut for the Spurs later that year and played in San Antonio for the next 17 seasons. During that stretch, he made six All-Star appearances and earned four All-NBA nods. He won four championships with the Spurs and was named the NBA Finals MVP in 2007.

Over the course of his career, which include with one season with the Hornets in 2018/19, Parker averaged 15.5 PPG and 5.6 APG in 1,254 regular season games (30.5 MPG). The Frenchman appeared in 226 postseason contests, averaging 17.9 PPG and 5.1 APG in those games.

Parker, who turned 37 years old in May, tells Spears that he feels like he’s physically capable of playing two more seasons in the NBA. However, he feels like the time is right to move on from his playing career.

“A lot of different stuff ultimately led me to this decision,” Parker said. “But, at the end of the day, I was like, if I can’t be Tony Parker anymore and I can’t play for a championship, I don’t want to play basketball anymore.”

While Parker moved on from the Spurs last summer, his retirement still represents the end of an era in San Antonio, where Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili also retired in recent years. The NBA has now lost three future Hall-of-Famers at the end of the 2018/19 season, with Dirk Nowitzki and Dwyane Wade also playing their final games.

According to Spears, Parker plans to continue living in San Antonio during his retirement, but will also spend time in France, where he’s the owner and president of French basketball club ASVEL. Spears’ article includes a lengthy Q&A with the veteran point guard, and is worth checking out in full.

Technically, Parker’s contract remains on the Hornets’ books for the 2019/20 season, but his $5.25MM salary is non-guaranteed. The club figures to release him at some point before his guarantee date on July 4.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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5 thoughts on “Tony Parker Announces Retirement

  1. I wish he hadn’t spent the last year of his career battling for a playoff spot with Cha and stayed in SA

    • InvalidUserID

      Came here to say this. Feels like Hakeem and Ewing playing for a random team at the end of their careers.

      • acarneglia

        He had a path to playing time in Charlotte, and a connection to Borrego and Batum. That’s the only reason he left

      • hiflew

        Lots of star players do it. Karl Malone and Gary Payton played for the Lakers. Michael Jordan with the Wizards. Hakeem with the Raptors. Ewing with the Sonics. Shaq with the entire NBA it seemed. Pippen with the Rockets. LeBron’s Laker stint will probably be added to the list one day.

        There are a lot more superstars that did that than ended with the team that made them famous. It’s sad in Parker’s case because three of the better known guys that didn’t switch teams were Spurs: Robinson, Duncan, and Ginobili.

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