New York Knicks guard Jason Kidd and Los Angeles Clippers forward Grant Hill have both decided to hang up their jerseys for good. Hill retired from the National Basketball Association on June 1 and Kidd followed suit retiring two days later on June 3.
“My time in professional basketball has been an incredible journey, but one that must come to an end after 19 years,” Kidd said. 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.”
Hill was ambivalent at first, but after reflection, chose to follow the player with whom he entered the league 19 years ago.
“I’m completely at peace with my decision to retire, but it was not arrived at lightly,” said Hill. “After the season, I took time and considered two schools of thought. On one hand, I’m 40 years old and still in great physical condition. My body tells me that I can continue playing.
“On the other hand, I’m 40 years old and still in great physical condition – a rare parting gift in this sport. I want to enjoy my health, spend quality time with my family and pursue other professional goals. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to spend almost 20 years of my life doing what I truly love, but I believe it is time to move on.”
In the 1994 NBA draft, Kidd was drafted second overall, while Hill was right behind him drafted third overall. Kidd played for five NBA teams, while Hill played for four. Kidd was co-Rookie of the Year in 1995, sharing the honors with none other than Hill.
Both held player of the year honors in their respective college conferences in 1994. Both have Olympic game gold medals in different years. Kidd has one championship, while Hill failed to get one in his career.
Kidd and Hill have a lot more in common than they thought. Although some things may differ slightly, there is one thing that both of these players do have in common. They are both future Hall of Famers