LaMarcus Aldridge announced his sudden retirement from the NBA on Thursday, April 15 after he was diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat.
The Brooklyn Nets player explained in a social media post that he discovered his issues with his heart following a recent game.
“My last game I played while dealing with an irregular heart beat. Later on that night, my rhythm got even worse which really worried me even more,” he shared.
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 he’s feeling better and out of the hospital, Aldridge believes it’s the right time to hang up his basketball shoes for good and walk away from the game.
“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’s time to put my health and family first.”
This is not the first time Aldridge has experience issues with his heart. In 2007 he was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, a heart disorder that can cause a rapid heartbeat.
The 35-year-old, who began his career with the Portland Trailblazers, scored 12 points in the Nets’ loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday, April 10. However, he did not play on Tuesday or Wednesday.
The news of Aldridge’s retirement comes just a few weeks after he reached a buyout with the San Antonio Spurs in late March. He then signed with the Nets, who recently signed Blake Griffin, and was expected to help the team compete for an NBA Championship.
After giving an update on his health, Aldridge thanked all the teams he played for throughout his career, including Brooklyn and Portland, and expressed his gratitude to each city for welcoming him with open arms.
“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,” he shared.
“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.”
He continued, “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.”
Though this probably isn’t how Aldridge wanted to walk away from the game, he knows he enjoyed every single second of playing in the NBA.
“You never know when something will come to an end, so make sure you enjoy it every day. I can truly say I did just that.”