Blake Griffin retires after 13 seasons in NBA: ‘I’m thankful for every single moment’

Blake Griffin officially announced his retirement from basketball Tuesday morning, making a post on social media as he reflected on his 13-year career. Griffin posted on both Instagram and X (formerly known as Twitter), where he expressed his gratitude for being able to play basketball at the highest level, while also thanking his family and agent who helped him along the way.

“I never envisioned myself as the guy who would have a ‘letter to basketball’ retirement announcement…and I’m still not going to be that guy. But as I reflected on my career, the one feeling I kept coming back to and the one thing wanted to express was thankfulness. 

“I’m thankful for every single moment — not just the good ones: the wins, the awards, the dunks, and the memorable times spent with family, friends, fans, teammates, and coaches. I could continue on about the people in my life who have contributed immensely to my career, but in this short non-letter, I have to acknowledge my parents, Tommy and Gail, and my brother, Taylor, for their unconditional support and guidance. Lastly, my agent Sam Goldfeder, who has been a steadfast voice of reason and my wartime consigliere — thank you.”

Griffin was drafted No. 1 overall in the 2009 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Clippers, but didn’t play his rookie season until the following year due to a stress fracture he suffered in his knee in L.A.’s final preseason game. When Griffin returned healthy for the 2010-11 season, he immediately made an impact, averaging 22.5 points, 12.1 rebounds, 3.8 assists and shooting 50.6% from the field. He earned Rookie of the Year honors in 2011 and was also named an All-Star, becoming the first rookie to earn that honor since Yao Ming did it in 2003. He was also the first rookie voted to the All-Star squad as a reserve since Tim Duncan in 1998. Griffin also won the Dunk Contest during the 2011 All-Star Weekend, showing off what would be a long career filled with otherworldly athleticism.

In the eight seasons Griffin played with the Clippers, he was an All-Star five times, earned All-NBA honors four times, and finished in the top-3 of MVP votes once. He was at the core of the Clippers’ electrifying “Lob City” rosters in the mid-2010s, which also featured Chris Paul, DeAndre Jordan, Jordan Clarkson and JJ Redick. Those teams consistently made the postseason, and while they never won a championship, it was certainly one of the most memorable eras of Clippers basketball.

Griffin was traded to the Pistons during the 2017-18 season, and in three seasons with the team, he continued to show that he could be a dominant scorer and rebounder. He earned an All-Star nod with the Pistons and All-NBA Third Team honors during the 2018-19 season.

When healthy, Griffin was one of the most dominant forwards during his era, and his elite athleticism was constantly on display. However, injuries did zap away some of those jaw-dropping dunks as the years went on, which Griffin was also thankful for in his retirement letter.

“I am equally thankful for the not-so-good moments: the losses, the injuries, the way too many surgeries, the lessons, the heartbreaks, and it wouldn’t be sports retirement letter without acknowledging the “haters.” All of these experiences made my 14 years in the league truly unforgettable, and I can’t help but to just feel thankful.”

Griffin ended his career by playing two seasons with the Brooklyn Nets from 2020-22, followed by a season with the Boston Celtics for the 2022-23 season. In his last season with the Celtics, he appeared in 41 games and averaged 4.1 points and 3.8 rebounds.

“The game of basketball has given me so much in this life, and I wouldn’t change a thing. Last but certainly not least, here comes the obligatory ‘I’m excited for my next chapter’ part: just kidding, I’m done.”

Prior to the NBA, Griffin had a standout collegiate career at Oklahoma, where he averaged 18.8 points, 11.8 rebounds and 2.1 assists over two seasons. He was named National Player of the Year in 2009 and led Oklahoma to the Elite Eight in his sophomore season. In 2016, the Sooners retired Griffin’s No. 23 jersey.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker