Credit: AP – Scanpix
Credit AP – Scanpix

The time has come for Alexis Ajinca to put an end to his basketball career. The 33-year-old French center, who played a total of 293 NBA games across seven seasons, announced via his Twitter account that he's calling it quits.

Alexis Ajinca

Alexis  Ajinca
Position: C
Age: 33
Height: 213 cm
Weight: 100 kg
Birth place: France

"The time has come for me to turn the page as a professional player. Basketball has brought me a lot. I thank the fans, clubs, coaches, volunteers, and my teammates for all those moments. I thank my friends and family who have always supported me," Ajinca wrote.

There was no real doubt about his retirement since he had not played a single game since a brief stint at ASVEL Villeurbanne from December 2018 to March 2019.

Prior to his official announcement, the 20th pick in the 2018 NBA draft, confirmed to French outlet "Le Progrès" that he had retired and is now dedicated to other projects.

"I stopped. It was difficult to be away from my family, my children and not be able to educate them day after day. I am a family guy," he explained.

So, the Frenchman decided to return to the United States, but since could not find a club there, he announced in April 2020 that it didn't work out.

The last few seasons in the NBA have been a struggle for him, in addition to his limited playing time with the Pelicans. He had to sit out through the entire 2017-18 season due to problems in both knees, which required surgery.

"That's not the way I wanted to finish. I have always said that I want to finish my career at Saint-Etienne. This is not possible because there is no longer a club there in the first or second division," he recently stated.

Now he is living in North Carolina, developing his portfolio of activities and T.R.U. Home, a non-profit organization aimed at providing job opportunities and shelter to the homeless. He also released his book "The View From Here".

Alexis Ajinca, a product of the famous INSEP, held NBA career averages of 5.3 points on 50.3% FGs, 3.9 rebounds and 0.6 blocks in 13.3 minutes. The highlight of his playing time was winning the title with France at the 2013 Eurobasket in Slovenia.

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