The Washington Post

Tracy McGrady retires from the NBA after 16-year career

Former NBA all-star Tracy McGrady announced his retirement on Monday at age 34. He last played for the San Antonio Spurs in their NBA Finals loss to the Miami Heat. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Tracy McGrady, a seven-time all-star and two-time league scoring champion, retired from the NBA on Monday. He last played for the San Antonio Spurs in their NBA Finals loss to the Miami Heat.

McGrady, 34, averaged 19.6 points, 5.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game during his 16-year career.

“Thank all of you who have supported me over 16 NBA seasons, 7 All-Stars, and countless exciting moments,” McGrady tweeted on Monday morning. “Retiring from NBA. Stay tuned.”

Associated Press

A standout high school player, the 18-year-old McGrady was drafted ninth overall in 1997 by the Raptors. McGrady played three seasons in Toronto, where he briefly shared the stage with distant cousin Vince Carter, before being dealt in 2000 to the Magic. He became a star in Orlando, where he made the first of seven consecutive all-star teams. McGrady also played for the Knicks, Pistons, Rockets and Hawks and briefly in China.

He delivered his finest individual season in 2002-03, winning his first scoring title with 32.1 points while averaging 6.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1.7 steals in a tour-de-force season that ended, once again, with a first-round exit at the hands of the Pistons.

Associated Press

Despite his scoring prowess, McGrady was plagued with injuries throughout his career and attracted criticism for never guiding a team to a playoff series victory.

No matter how brilliantly McGrady played, he couldn’t get his teams over the hump in the postseason, and a narrative started to form. After the Magic missed the postseason in 2003-04, McGrady was traded to the Rockets. He enjoyed one of the crowning moments of his career that season when he scored 13 points in 35 seconds to lift the Rockets over the Spurs in a December game.

Associated Press

McGrady underwent microfracture surgery on his knee in 2009 and was sidelined as the Rockets reached the second round of the NBA playoffs, furthering fueling his critics.

Last season, McGrady finally tasted playoff success as a role player for San Antonio. But his playing time was limited as the team’s quest for a title ended with a loss to Miami in Game 7 of the Final.

Although McGrady is retired from the league, he has not ruled out playing overseas.

Asked to clarify whether he is considering playing in China, McGrady said: “Officially retired from the NBA. Door’s still open.”


Kelyn Soong is a news aide in the sports department. He writes about tennis and running and contributes to The Early Lead and D.C. Sports Bog.
Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Close video player
Now Playing

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.