Ex-Warriors forward Andre Iguodala retires after 19-year NBA career

Ex-Warriors forward Andre Iguodala retires after 19-year NBA career originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

Andre Iguodala’s decorated 19-year NBA career officially has come to a close.

The former Warriors forward and four-time NBA champion explained to Andscape’s Marc Spears the reasoning behind his decision to retire from the game.

“It’s just the right time,” Iguodala told Spears in a phone interview. “Time started to get limited for me and I didn’t want to put anything in the back seat. I didn’t want to have to try to delegate time anymore. Especially with on the court, off the court with family. A lot.

“You want to play at a high level. But then family is a lot. My son is 16 and then two girls. So, [I’m] looking forward to seeing them grow up in those important years.”

The 39-year-old spent the first eight seasons of his career with the 76ers after Philadelphia selected him with the No. 9 overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft. He then spent one season in Denver with the Nuggets before moving to the Bay and joining the Warriors.

Iguodala was a part of the Warriors’ dynasty run that made five consecutive trips to the NBA Finals and won three of them. He spent two seasons (2019-20, 2020-21) with the Miami Heat before returning to Golden State where he spent the final two seasons of his career and won another championship.

“We won four championships, that’s kind of unheard of,” Iguodala told Spears. “There are only a handful of teams that can say that. You got the [Chicago] Bulls, the [Los Angeles] Lakers, [Boston] Celtics, us, and that’s it. No organization has been run like this. And I think it’s a testament to us believing in each other, playing the right way. The game was played beautifully and had perfect timing for me right there in my prime.

“And things just happen the way they were supposed to happen when they happened, and it makes you actually strengthen your faith. You just give it all the way up to someone else to say, ‘Let me play to my maximum ability based on the work that I put in and the focus that what I have put into the game has paid off.’ “

The Warriors released a statement from owner Joe Lacob on Iguodala’s retirement.

“Andre Iguodala was a huge part of four NBA championship teams with the Warriors and will forever be remembered for his many contributions to our franchise, both on and off the court. His team-first approach, which we witnessed immediately upon his arrival in Golden State, helped set the tone for much of our success, as did the impact he had on the defensive end of the floor.

“We look forward to raising #9 to the rafters in Chase Center at some point in the future, and we wish him well in what will assuredly be a very successful post-playing career venture into the business world.”

Iguodala averaged 11.3 points on 46.3 percent shooting over the course of nearly two decades, with 4.9 rebounds and 4.2 assists. Perhaps his most memorable run on the court was in the 2015 NBA Finals when he earned the Finals MVP award for doing the impossible and locking down former Cleveland Cavalier and NBA superstar LeBron James.

On top of his elite defense, Iguodala was effective on the other end of the floor, too. He averaged 16.3 points on an efficient 52.1-percent shooting from the field and 40 percent from 3-point range, adding 5.8 rebounds, 4 assists and 1.3 steals per game. In that closeout Game 6, Iguodala dropped 25 points on 45-percent shooting, with five rebounds, five assists and two steals in 36 minutes.

“That was pretty cool,” Iguodala told Spears. “It was funny. [Then-Warriors general manager] Bob Myers was the one that gave me the news. That was one of those moments you’ll never forget. I remember every moment when that happened. But it’s always safe to say if you just go out and do your job and what you’re supposed to do, things will happen the way they’re supposed to happen. You just got to have faith that things will work out favorably as long as you have that faith.

“You see a lot in sports like guys going out, making sure they get it, and that sometimes that gets in the way of the team success. It always does.”

In his last two seasons with the Warriors, specifically last season, Iguodala was sort of an unofficial assistant coach and served as a mentor to the young players, such as Jordan Poole, Jonathan Kuminga and Moses Moody.

On and off the court, Iguodala’s impact was felt and certainly will be missed.

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