Nets' Aldridge retires at 35 due to irregular heartbeat

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FILE - Then-San Antonio Spurs' LaMarcus Aldridge runs up the court during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies in San Antonio, in this Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021, file photo. Aldridge retired from the NBA on Thursday, April 15, 2021, after saying he experienced an irregular heartbeat during his final game with the Brooklyn Nets. Aldridge, 35, posted a statement on social media saying the heart concern he had during and after Brooklyn's victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday was one of the scariest things he's experienced. (AP Photo/Darren Abate, File)

NEW YORK – LaMarcus Aldridge retired from the NBA on Thursday after saying he experienced an irregular heartbeat during his final game with the Brooklyn Nets.

Aldridge, 35, posted a statement on social media saying the heart concerns he had during and after Brooklyn's loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday were one of the “scariest things” he's experienced.

Aldridge, who was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome — an abnormality that can cause a rapid heartbeat — as a rookie in 2007, said he feels better now after getting it checked out but nevertheless decided to end his 15-year career.

“For 15 years I've put basketball first, and now, it is time to put my health and my family first,” Aldridge wrote.

The seven-time All-Star signed with the Nets on March 28 and he had become their starting center. He missed the last two games with what the team had called a non-COVID-19 illness.

Nets general manager Sean Marks said the team fully supported Aldridge's decision.

“We know this was not an easy decision for him, but after careful consideration and consultation with numerous medical experts, he made the best decision for him, his family and for his life after basketball,” Marks said.

Aldridge joined the Nets after reaching a buyout agreement with the San Antonio Spurs and provided his new team with an inside post presence that was one of the few things it was missing. The 6-foot-11 Aldridge had the best of his five games with the Nets in the one before his heart trouble, scoring 22 points in a victory over New Orleans on April 7.