Few players in the National Basketball League (NBA) have ever had a respectable career and honor to spend 22 years in four different decades playing the game. During that time, Vince Carter has been a mentor and leading example to countless NBA players.
What We Know:
- Carter officially announced his retirement from professional basketball on Thursday after 22 seasons in the league with eight teams.
- “I’m officially done playing basketball professionally,” Carter said in a podcast hosted by the The Ringer and the Atlanta Hawks, the team he played for for the past two years. “I’ll play at home.”
- Carter’s time at UNC was legendary for his dunks, and he played alongside players such as Antwan Jamison, Shammond Williams, and Ed Cota. During his time at Carolina, UNC was ACC Title Champions and made appearances in the Final Four. He was honored with First Team All-ACC and second-team All-American in 1998.
From 1998 to 2019, Vince Carter’s best dunk from each season!
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) June 25, 2020
- His time as an NBA player spans across his prolific drafting to the Toronto Raptors; the Raptors selected Carter 5th in the 1998 NBA Draft. In his interview, Carter specifically talks about the 2001 NBA Finals against the Philadelphia 76ers and during that time he decided to walk with his graduating class at UNC.
- The decision was highly criticized but Carter made a promise to his mother to receive his degree after leaving his junior year at Carolina. The promise was important for him to keep.
- Carter has retired this year, playing his last game and season as an Atlanta Hawk, but due to COVID-19 cutting the NBA season short, no one officially knows if this was his final round. Carter has quietly become one of the most prolific players ever to play.
Carter’s place in history has been cemented. Pandemic or not, nothing will take away from his presence as one of the most dominate heels to ever enter the league. With his retirement official, the NBA is now without a “Dean Smith product” in the last 55 years.