After 19 years, four teams, 1,026 games and numerous minor and major injuries, former Suns forward Grant Hill came to a conclusion last week.
“I think I knew Wednesday,” Hill told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug & Wolf Tuesday. “I woke up Wednesday and said ‘I don’t want to play anymore.'”
Hill made that decision official on Saturday when he announced his retirement during TNT’s broadcast of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
“The crazy thing and the thing that made it somewhat challenging was obviously I did not play this year much. Part of that maybe was the circumstances, maybe age, maybe I just wasn’t good enough, I don’t know.”
Hill was limited by a knee injury this past season and played just 29 games for the Los Angeles Clippers, whom he signed with before the season. He says the knee feels better now than it has in the last three years, but the decision was still an easy one.
“I just felt like it was time. There was no particular reason,” he said. “This is it, I’m done, I’m tired of all that goes into making sure that you can go out there and compete. I’m ready to do something different.”
Hill, a hugely-respected figure in basketball during the course of his career, has made impacts both on and off the floor. For that reason, he has many different options now that his playing career is over.
“I kind of like the sound of ‘Doug, Wolf and Hill,'” he joked. But a career in the broadcasting is definitely something that could be in Hill’s future. So could a career as an NBA executive or head coach.
“I have thought about being involved (in the game) in some capacity, but at this point it’s hard to say what that is — there are certainly some opportunities out here and there,” Hill said. “I’m just going to kind of take my time and initally, just decompress.
“I’ve kind of been on this journey, this grind for nineteen years. You kind of got to get off, take a deep breath, get your sea legs a little bit and then try to figure it all out.”
Could that process of figuring it all out lead Hill down the political path?
“I’ve always admired the political game, growing up in Washington. I think in the 80s in particular, a lot of the topics of conversation around the dinner table centered around either sports or politics,” Hill said. “I think the political arena has changed since then, so I don’t know, I think there’s ways to participate in politics without being a politician.”