There was only one more step to Vince Carter’s record-breaking season: the paperwork.
Carter, 42, made it official and re-signed with the Atlanta Hawks on Friday more than two months after they reportedly came to a contract agreement. It will be his 22nd and final season after announcing in June he had only one more in him.
Carter chasing records in 2019-20
When he makes his first appearance, he’ll officially hold the record for longest NBA career. He’s currently tied with Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Garnett, Kevin Willis and Robert Parish.
John Stockton holds the record for games played at 1,504 and Carter can move up from fifth (1,481 games played).
After his first game of the new calendar year in 2020, he’ll become the first player to play in a game in four decades. Carter’s career began in 1998 with the Toronto Raptors and a Rookie of the Year award.
If plays on or past his birthday on Jan. 26, he’ll become the first 43-year-old to do so since Willis in 2007.
Four-decade career for Carter
Carter averaged 7.4 points, 2.6 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 2018-19, his lone year with the Hawks. He shot 38.9 percent from 3-point distance in 17.5 minutes per game.
It’s obviously not the production of his early seasons, when he earned eight all-star selections averaging more than 20 points a game. He finished top 10 in scoring six times. But he’s still producing and is known as a respected veteran presence and mentor, a big get around a young core in Atlanta.
He spoke about his career and why he prioritizes mentorship over ring-chasing this summer for Yahoo Sports’ Ben Rohrbach’s “My Vet” series.
Carter, the fifth overall pick in the 1998 draft, has played with the Nets when they were in New Jersey, the Orlando Magic, Phoenix Sun, Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies and Sacramento Kings. The 6-foot-6 Carter has averaged 17.2 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.0 steals over 30.7 minutes over his entire career.
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