In a sudden twist of events, 15 year NBA veteran and Brooklyn Nets player LaMarcus Aldridge announced his retirement from the NBA. The abrupt decision came as a result of the player suffering from an irregular heartbeat. The decision was posted by Aldridge on his social media saying that during his last game – which was a 126-101 loss to the LA Lakers on April 10 – he was “dealing with an irregular heartbeat”.
According to the seven-time All-Star, the heartbeat rhythm “got even worse which really worried me”. His got condition worsened to the point that he had to be accompanied and helped by his teammates to the hospital for a health check. Despite the overall positive results of the health check, the experience he suffered during and after the game was a wake-up call for Aldridge, going as far as to call it one of the “one of the scariest things I’ve experienced”.
The decision to retire not only came from fear and caution to what he had experienced but also if it could potentially get worse if he continued to stress his body.
As it stands, this is not the first time that LaMarcus Aldridge has taken time off from basketball due to health-related issues. Back in 2007 when he was playing for the Portland Trail Blazers who had drafted him, Aldridge was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome: a condition that causes the heart to beat abnormally fast for periods of time. He underwent medical procedures that year and in 2011 to try and treat the problem.
Then in 2017 while playing for the San Antonio Spurs, he was ruled out indefinitely after he was diagnosed with a minor case of arrhythmia: a time period in which the heart beats irregularly either too fast or too slow.
From this medical history, it can be concluded that Aldridge had been carrying some sort of heart condition and it caught up with him on the night of April 10. As a result, it was only a logical decision, based on many medical experts that the Brooklyn Nets consulted, for him to retire in order to protect himself from further harm potentially linked to the sport.
As Aldridge himself put it, “For 15 years, I’ve put basketball first, and now, it is time to put my health and family first”.