NBA legend Vince Carter revealed on national television today that he plans to retire after the 2019-20 season. Def Pen Hoops’ Chris Montano recorded Carter’s appearance on ESPN’s The Jump earlier today.
While we’ve known for a few months that the veteran intended to return next season, he never officially said that the upcoming campaign would be his last.
On paper it makes sense that the end is near for the 42-year-old but the 21-year vet averaged 7.4 points in over 17 quality minutes per game for the rebuilding Hawks last season. Carter played in 76 games for ATL in 2018-19, dropping double digits in 28 of them.
Despite his success in Atlanta, Carter is set to be an unrestricted free agent this offseason and after cashing pay cheques with six different teams over the course of the past decade, there’s no indication exactly where he’ll host his farewell tour.
Of course that could simply mean that the iconic 1998 draft pick would consider signing a ceremonial one-day deal prior to formally hanging up his Nike Shox. (Paul Pierce did exactly that with Boston in 2017).
Nostalgia aside, Carter earned the veteran minimum this season and could provide depth and an historic amount of experience for any team willing to take on the veteran.
There are obvious benefits to bringing a greybeard like Carter aboard, especially one that shot .389 from beyond the arc last season, but understandable distractions too.
Regardless of where Carter does end up, the 2019-20 season will be his 22nd in the league, giving him the most career seasons of all-time ahead of Kevin Garnett, Dirk Nowitzki, Robert Parish and Kevin Willis who all played 21.