NEW YORK (AP) — Jason Kidd became one of the best by making others better.
He turned around a longtime-losing franchise, guided another to a championship, and helped his last one to its first division title since the year he came into the NBA 19 years ago.
Teammates loved him. The U.S. national team needed him.
But he looked more burned out than brilliant in the final weeks of the season, and on Monday he decided to end one of the greatest careers for a point guard in league history.
“My time in professional basketball has been an incredible journey, but one that must come to an end after 19 years,” Kidd said in a statement released by the New York Knicks. “As I reflect on my time with the four teams I represented in the NBA, I look back fondly at every season and thank each and every one of my teammates and coaches that joined me on the court.”
The Bay Area native was born in San Francisco, raised in Oakland, prepped at St. Joseph Notre Dame in Alameda before playing at Cal for two years.
Kidd won an NBA title and two Olympic gold medals, is second on the career list in assists and steals, and was a 10-time All-Star. But he missed 22 of his 25 shots in the postseason and was scoreless in his final 10 playoff games shortly after turning 40, and decided to walk away with two years and more than $6 million left on the deal he signed last summer.
His retirement comes two days after fellow 40-year-old Grant Hill, with whom Kidd shared Rookie of the Year honors in 1995, announced his retirement.
Kidd went on from there to have big impacts on every team he joined. He led the Nets to two NBA Finals in 2002-03, helped the Dallas Mavericks win the 2011 title, and was on the first Knicks team to reach the second round of the playoffs since 2000.
He averaged 12.6 points, 8.7 assists, 6.3 rebounds and 1.93 steals in a career that also included a stop in Phoenix. Kidd had numerous ways to make his mark on games, ranking third on the career list with 107 triple-doubles while finishing third all-time in 3-pointers made, despite being considered a poor outside shooter when he came into the league.
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Ex-NBA star Blaylock faces charges in fatal crash
JONESBORO, Ga. (AP) — Former NBA All-Star Daron “Mookie” Blaylock has been charged with vehicular homicide arising from a head-on crash in suburban Atlanta, authorities announced Monday.
Blaylock, 46, is also charged with driving on a suspended license and failure to maintain his lane in the Friday crash, Jonesboro Police Chief Franklin Allen said.
Blaylock was driving an SUV that crossed the center line of Tara Boulevard — about 20 miles south of downtown Atlanta — and struck a van, police said. A van passenger, 43-year-old Monica Murphy, died hours later. Her husband, who was also in the van, was treated and released at a hospital.
Blaylock was also wanted in Spalding County on charges of failure to appear in court, DUI and drug possession, Allen said.