Former Trail Blazers Star LaMarcus Aldridge Announces Sudden Retirement from the NBA Due to Health Concerns

“Though I’m better now, what I felt with my heart that night was still one of the scariest things I’ve experienced.”

LaMarcus Aldridge, the onetime Portland Trail Blazers star, is retiring from the NBA after 15 seasons due to the discovery of an irregular heartbeat.

The 35-year-old power forward, who signed with the Brooklyn Nets last month, made the announcement in a statement on social media this morning.

“My last game, I played while dealing with an irregular heartbeat. Later on that night, my rhythm got even worse, which really worried me even more,” Aldridge said. “Though I’m better now, what I felt with my heart that night was still one of the scariest things I’ve experienced.”

The University of Texas standout was drafted second overall in 2006, heading to the Blazers in a draft-night trade. Following the premature retirement of guard Brandon Roy and career-derailing injuries sustained by center Greg Oden, Aldridge became the face of the franchise.

In nine seasons with the Blazers, Aldridge averaged 19 points and eight rebounds per game. He remains the team’s all-time leading rebounder and ranks third in total points scored.

Aldridge signed with the San Antonio Spurs in 2015. In March, he reached a buyout agreement with the team, with some observers speculating he might return to Portland, a possibility he’d entertained during the intervening years. Instead, he joined the title-favorite Nets. He played five games with the team, averaging 13 points and three rebounds, but missed the last two contests due to an unspecified illness.

Aldridge has dealt with heart-related issues before: In 2007, he was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, causing him to miss the last eight games of his rookie season.

Aldridge ends his career with seven All-Star appearances and five All NBA selections. He is one of only 25 players in NBA history with more than 19,000 career points and 8,000 rebounds, according to StatMuse.

Read Aldridge’s full statement—in which he thanks Portland “for drafting a skinny, Texas kid and giving him a chance”—below: