Elton Brand is also set to join Kobe Bryant in the retirement bandwagon as NBA rumors are swirling that the 18-year veteran will most likely retire on Wednesday after the final game of the Philadelphia 76ers for this season.
CSN Philly reported that the 37-year old NBA veteran stated that the long journey through the league has caught up with him.
“I said that last time, but I think this is going to be it. We’ll see what the opportunities are, but the travel’s tough having young kids. I didn’t expect play 25 minutes in back-to-back games, and stuff like that. But we’ll see what the opportunities I have,” Brand said.
Brand was selected in the first round overall pick by the Chicago Bulls in the 1999 NBA Draft and played for the Bulls until 2001. Then, Brand was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers in 2001 and in the following year he became the first Clipper since Danny Manning (1994) to be selected to the All-Star team. He was also part of the team that led the Clippers to a sixth seed finish in 2006 with a 47-35 win-loss record in the Western Conference.
By the mid 2007-2008 season of the NBA, Brand battle several injuries that he decided to become a free agent to help the Clippers have a flexible salary cap and in July 2008 Brand would then sign with the 76ers and would play for the team until the 2012 season. He would also suit up for the Dallas Maverick and Atlanta Hawks before returning to the 76ers for this season.
Brand stated that the main reason for his retirement is his family since he wants to spend quality time with his kids.
“That’s how you have to think about it, just the body being banged up, travel, missing the kids, family life and things like that. I’ ’m a real adult now. I’m a real father, a real dad now. It’s still fun competing. I’d be hooping twice a week anyway, but not every day practicing and big time games. So we’ll see,” Brand added.
Despite the NBA rumors of him walking away from the game, Brand stated that he has high hopes for the 76ers’ future and expects that the team’s rebuilding will have positive results, especially with the coming free agency and draft picks.
ESPN reported that Brand signed with the 76ers on Jan. 4 to provide leadership on-and-off the floor for the young roster. Brand has played in 17 games and is averaging 4.1 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists.
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