DeLisha Milton-Jones announces retirement

DeLisha Milton-Jones took a job as assistant coach at Pepperdine last month, so her retirement was implied. But today she made it official with a“letter to basketball”:

Dear Basketball,

I’ve toiled over writing this letter for months now, but I’ve finally come to terms with announcing my… retirement! It feels funny to say the word without getting emotional. Basketball has been a part of me for almost half of my lifetime. If I could play forever, I would do it without hesitation. There’s nothing like being a professional athlete. I took a lot of pride in calling myself one……

I gave the game every ounce of me to the point of complete destruction and rebuilding… literally! I played the game so hard for so long that I now walk away with two titanium rods in my shins and a replaced ACL, MCL and Achilles tendon. I would give all of those body parts up again for a chance at reliving my 17 years. One thing’s for sure: The undying love I have in my heart for the game will never leave. Father Time is still undefeated, but I gave him a run for his money.

Aw, geez. So many greats leaving the game this year. DMJ is one of my favorites. This is rough.

DMJ’s career by the numbers.

The league’s longest-tenured player, in photos.