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‘Half-man, half-amazing’ wraps it up

By Tim Reynolds

The Associated Press

Vince Carter made his retirement official on Thursday, announcing his 22-year NBA career, the longest in league history, has come to an end.

He became the first NBA player to appear in four different decades.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver lauded Carter as “a true ambassador of the game.”

Carter appeared in 1,541 NBA games, behind only Robert Parish (1,611) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1,560) on the league’s all-time list. He started his career with Toronto, then played for New Jersey, Orlando, Phoenix, Dallas, Memphis, Sacramento and spent his final two seasons with Atlanta.

Carter scored 25,728 points in his career, 19th-most in NBA history.

During his heyday, his nickname was “Half-man, half-amazing.”

“Throughout his historic 22-year journey covering an unprecedented four different decades, his evolving career arc was perhaps like none other in league history — from Top 5 Draft Pick to Rookie of the Year to Slam Dunk Champion to superstar and eight-time All-Star to Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year and valuable role player,” the Hawks said in a statement.

Carter’s last game was March 11, a contest the Hawks lost at home in overtime to New York. By the time that game was winding down, the NBA already had announced that it was suspending the season at the conclusion of that night’s play after Utah center Rudy Gobert became the first player in the league known to test positive for the coronavirus.

The moment was not lost on Atlanta fans, who chanted “We want Vince!” repeatedly with 19.5 seconds left in overtime and with the Knicks’ victory clearly decided.

Carter checked back into the game at that point, inbounded the ball to Trae Young, then trailed the play as the Hawks headed downcourt.

Young flipped the ball back to Carter, who took an uncontested 3-pointer. The shot went in, Carter threw his arms skyward, and the clock ran out on the game a few seconds later.

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

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