Just over one month on from signing a contract with the Atlanta Hawks, 14-year NBA veteran Jason Richardson has called time on his career.
As revealed by Yahoo! Sports, the former fifth overall pick took the decision to retire after learning of a bone spur issue in his right knee.
The 34-year-old spent time on five different NBA franchises and leaves the league as one of only three players to have won back-to-back Slam Dunk Contests - Michael Jordan and Nate Robinson the other two to share the honor.
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Having dealt with a number of knee injuries since entering the league back in 2001, Richardson explained how fears over his long-term health were the motivating factor:
"I didn't want to limp the rest of my life," the power forward told Yahoo Sports. "I still have my whole life in front of me, God willing."
While he entered the offseason believing he was capable of another season in that elusive search for an NBA title, the Michigan native had a change of heart during a recent trip to an Atlanta park:
"I sat alone at a park in Atlanta thinking and no one said anything to me because they didn't recognize me since I just got there.
"I talked to my wife for an hour on the phone and then I sat for five hours thinking while listening to music before deciding that retiring was the right thing to do."
Although Richardson will perhaps be best remembered for his iconic 360-windmill dunks - his Dunk contest victories in '02 and '03 particular highlights - the veteran was also an effective all-round shooter during spells with the Warriors, Bobcats, Suns, Magic and 76ers.
He leaves the NBA with a career average of 17.1 points per game and scored 14,644 points in total.
NBA fans: Where does Richardson rank amongst dunking stars of the past? Have your say in the comments below...