Less than a month after leaving the San Antonio Spurs and signing with the Brooklyn Nets, LaMarcus Aldridge announced Thursday that he’s retiring from the NBA.
On Instagram, Aldridge posted a letter that he said he wrote with a “heavy heart.” He said he made the decision to retire because of heart issues.
Aldridge said he noticed he had an irregular heartbeat during his last game, and said the problem got worse later that night. He told the team doctors the next morning and went to the hospital to be checked out.
Aldridge last played with the Nets on Saturday when he scored 12 points, had three rebounds, three blocked shots and two assists in the team’s loss to the Lakers.
He missed games this week against Minnesota and Philadelphia.
“Though I’m better now, what I felt with my heart that night was still one of the scariest things I’ve experienced,” Aldridge said in his Instagram post.
That experience prompted his decision to retire saying, “it is time to put my health and family first.”
Aldridge thanked Portland, San Antonio and Brooklyn, the cities where he played during his 15-year NBA career. He was a top recruited player out of the University of Texas.
After more than five seasons with the Spurs, the team agreed to a contract buyout on March 25 after San Antonio was unable to trade the veteran player. He told reporters Nets all-star Kevin Durant helped recruit him to Brooklyn.
Aldridge spent five-plus seasons with the Spurs and was named to the NBA All-Star team three times while in San Antonio, but his role with the Spurs diminished this season as head coach Gregg Popovich moved ahead with the development of the team’s younger players.
Last month he said he had “no regrets” about his time with the Spurs.
Now, Aldridge says he’s thankful for everything basketball has given him including the memories and friendships.
“You never know when something will come to an end, so make sure you enjoy it everyday. I can truly say I did just that,” Aldridge said.