It was not the date or moment that was planned. But sometimes, it just works out that way.
It was already announced that the NBA suspended the rest of the season until further notice. With that news and a seemingly insurmountable seven-point deficit for the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday night, future NBA Hall of Famer and UNC alum Vince Carter checked back into the game with just 19.5 seconds left in overtime.
Carter already announced that the 2019-2020 season was his last. The Hawks are in the cellar of the Eastern Conference and with the uncertainty surrounding the remainder of the NBA regular season, this was likely the last time Carter stepped on the hardwoods as a NBA player.
For his longevity, it was a memorable season. Carter is the only NBA player to play in 22 seasons and the only to play in four decades. Statistically, there is not much to write home about, as Carter is logging the fewest minutes and second-fewest points per game in his career.
However, as Wednesday’s game came to a close, there was one last magical moment from Vinsanity.
Check out the video below and start it at 9:00 mark:
The fans were on their feet. The applause was a thank you for the moments and memories throughout the years. One last salute to the beloved veteran.
And there it was: one more memory for the road. Carter nails a smoooooth three from the top of the key (albeit with little resistance from the defense).
More than likely, that was the end of an era.
Such a weird night but I am truly thankful for each and every person during this 22yr journey.— Vince Carter (@mrvincecarter15) March 12, 2020
If this is really it, I thank everyone for your love and support for all these years.
B E Z✌
For NBA and basketball fans everyone, Carter brought excitement and charisma to the game.
For Toronto and fans north of the border, Carter meant so much because he helped push the franchise into relevancy. He was NBA Rookie of the Year in the franchise’s fourth season. In its fifth season, the Raptors made their first playoff appearance.
For Carolina fans in particular, that likely final game means much more. The last professional player coached by Dean Smith and Bill Guthridge. The last on-court connection to that special era in UNC athletics.
Thank you for the memories Vince. We’ll see you in Chapel Hill sometime soon.