Tony Parker retires after 18 seasons

Tony Parker

Tony Parker was the 2007 NBA Finals MVP when the San Antonio Spurs swept the Cleveland Cavaliers

It was only fitting that Parker made the announcement in San Antonio, the city where he spent all but one season of his Hall of Fame career. While Parker intends to spend more time working closely with ASVEL and his new school, he plans to continue to have a home base in San Antonio.

Though the Hornets were still in the hunt for a playoff spot, they went full youth, and Parker, as he had in the final season with the Spurs, would need to be a mentor from the bench. The Frenchman also would have been an excellent marketing tool, since the Hornets are going to play the first National Basketball Association regular-season in Paris in January against the Milwaukee Bucks.

"It is with great emotion that I put an end to my career", Parker wrote in his farewell.

Though he initially wanted to play in the league for 20 seasons, Parker realized after last season that it was time for him to walk away and focus on other aspects of his life.

'You don't want to do like Dwyane and Dirk?' And I said, 'No, because it's not on the Spurs jersey.' So, for me, it's different. After spending just one season with the Hornets, don't be surprised if Parker signs a one-day contract with the Spurs to retire as a member of the team he played 17 years for.

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There was hope that Parker would play his 20th season as a Spur, but those dreams are now over.

Parker's decision is no surprise.

"They were like, 'Are you sure?'" Parker said. And so I knew that the time changed, and I was being very nostalgic.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said he's loved Parker for a long time and praised him for an "amazing career". "I have so much stuff going on that I've always been at peace with that decision".

"When it comes, I'll be ready to leave it to the young guys". It never gets old, and so that's why it was nice to win with my women's team, because winning championships is hard to explain to somebody how you feel. And it's amusing because that whole year in Charlotte, I realized even more that what we had (in San Antonio) was very, very special.

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