Miami Heat’s point guard and shooting guard Goran Dragic has officially put his foot down about his retirement. The 33-year old NBA player declared that he will be retiring from international basketball. Dragic was a professional basketball player in Slovenia and Spain before entering the NBA in 2008.
Dragic’s whys and the hows:
The Miami Heat guard gave a lot of reasons for his firm decision. These include his looming free agency this summer, a desire to spend as much quality time as possible with his family and the fact that at his age — he’ll be 34 in May — another offseason of playing wouldn’t be the best thing for his body. He has concerns about his health.
“When I was younger, I showed my nation that I would always play for my national team, no matter who was there,” Dragic said. “If we had a good team or a bad team, I was there. I feel like I gave everything that I have, and at this point in my career, my body isn’t the same, and I have to be smart.”
He also feels he has done all that he could for his team.
Dragic said after leading Slovenia to its best sports moment, a gold medal at the 2017 European championships, that he was finished with the international game. Slovenia has not qualified for the Olympics.
There has been news going around in Slovenia, that Dragic should play for the national team again. However, not even the bait of going to the Olympics seems to budge him. He wishes to give more time to his family.
“Summer is busy with the kids, and I have to always put them first,” Dragic said.
He shows concern about his national team and its growth too, just not at his own physical expense.
“I need to be smart,” Dragic said. “I played for 12, 13 years nonstop. That takes a toll on your body. We have a young national team, and they need to grow as a group with Luka as the leading man. He needs to be the leader, to get that team to grow together, and I think he’ll do an amazing job.”
Luka Dončić is another Slovenian NBA player who currently plays for the Dallas Mavericks.