NBA News: After 22 Years On The Court, Vince Carter Officially Retires

Vince Carter #15 of the Toronto Raptors dunks the ball against the Denver Nuggets at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada.
Nat Butler / Getty Images

After 22 years on the basketball court, Vince Carter has finally decided to call it a career in the NBA. Professional basketball will never be the same after more than two decades, eight teams, and a player that was literally up to his elbow in the Slam Dunk Contest.

On Thursday morning, Carter was a guest on a podcast hosted by The Ringer and the Atlanta Hawks to discuss various topics. As reported by USA Today, he revealed that his time on the NBA court was over.

“I’m officially done playing basketball professionally. I’ll play at home.”

Last year, Carter signed a one-year deal to remain with the Atlanta Hawks, who he signed with before the 2018 season. He already said that the 2019-2020 season was going to be his last, but no one quite expected it to end the way it did.

In mid-March, the NBA suspended play due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it will resume in Walt Disney World next month. Twenty-two teams were invited to Orlando to continue the season, but the 20-47 Hawks weren’t one of them.

On the Winging It podcast on Spotify, Carter said that he “felt that it was pretty much over” after his last game on March 11. In that overtime loss to the New York Knicks, Carter came in and drilled a three-pointer, which allows him to say, “at least I made the last shot of my career.”

In the 1998 NBA Draft, the Toronto Raptors selected Carter out of North Carolina with the fifth overall pick. He went on to win the Rookie of the Year Award before spending the first seven seasons of his career in Canada.

Halfway through the 2004-2005 season, a trade sent him to the New Jersey Nets, where he spent the next four years. A couple of seasons in Orlando led to time spent with the Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies, and Sacramento Kings before finishing up in Atlanta.

After 22 seasons, Carter finished with more than 1,500 games played and a career average of 16.7 points per game. He finished as the 19th all-time in NBA history in scoring.

Known for his emphatic dunking ability, Vince Carter is remembered fondly for winning the 2000 Slam Dunk Contest. The young superstar started things off with a 360-windmill jam, but that was only the beginning.

By the time the night was over, he jumped up so high that he hung from the rim by his elbow after a dunk.

Earlier in 2020, Carter became the first player in NBA history to appear in a game in four different decades.