Brandon Roy: 'My Basketball Days Are Numbered. That's No Secret'

Jesse DorseyFeatured ColumnistJune 23, 2013

In case there was any doubt left, Brandon Roy has all but confirmed that he's done playing basketball in the NBA. Roy played for the Minnesota Timberwolves this past season, although that's a bit of an overstatement.


UPDATE: Monday, June 24, at 7:55 a.m. ET by Ethan Norof:

Roy was misquoted the first time around, and actually said this his basketball days are "numbered," rather than "over." Still, the message is the same. It's unlikely that Roy will play in the NBA again.

---End of update---


While Roy was under contract, he played in just five games with the Timberwolves before his knees turned on him yet again, requiring what turned out to be another season-ending surgery in November.

Speaking at a University of Washington alumni game in Seattle, per Ben Golliver and, ESPN Insider's Kevin Pelton tweeted out Roy's realization Sunday afternoon.

The former Washington Huskies star has always had a sound reputation around the league, so it's possible he ends up landing a job in some sort of coaching or player development capacity. That's something Roy will decide later this year.

The sixth overall pick the 2006 draft by Minnesota and subsequently shipped over to Portland in a draft-day deal, Roy was the 2007 Rookie of the Year with the Trail Blazers.

His next three seasons in the NBA were promising. He made the All-Star Game in each year, and the Trail Blazers made solid improvements (despite Greg Oden's quick demise into an injury-plagued could-have-been).

He went through heel and ankle ailments in his first two seasons, but it wasn't until his third year when knee injuries started to pile up and threaten his career.

Including last November's arthroscopic surgery, Roy had four knee procedures over the course of five years, including one instance when he had surgery on both knees in January 2011.

Roy retired for the first time in 2011 after announcing that he had been diagnosed with a degenerative knee condition and lacked cartilage in either knee. As a result, Portland used its amnesty provision on the popular guard.

Taking after Kobe Bryant, Roy underwent platelet-rich plasma therapy on his knees and decided he would give basketball another try, signing with the Timberwolves during the 2012 summer. Following his surgery, Roy wanted to return to the T-Wolves, but the team recently waived him in May and that was that.

He should have had a rich and extended pro career, but despite his continued perseverance, it wasn't to be. Instead of mourning for the loss, however, it seems more appropriate in this case to celebrate what was.

Roy had one of the more memorable first-round games in recent memory against the Dallas Mavericks back in the 2011 playoffs.

As a team, Portland was surprisingly the overwhelming choice to be the likely upset artists in the first round of the playoffs, and if Roy would have had more performances like this, that would have been the case.

He took a hold of Game 4 late in the third quarter in what was otherwise one of the most depressing, overwhelmingly dull playoff games imaginable.

Dallas was winning 67-46 late in the third before Roy heaved up a three-pointer that hung on the rim before falling in, giving him six points on the game. Eighteen of Portland's fourth-quarter points came from Roy, as did three assists and the game-winning jumper with 39 seconds left in the game.

The crowd was insane, but, combined, they weren't nearly as jubilant as Roy. He played one more game in Portland, but for the sake of remembering that moment, let's just pretend like this was the last one.

A career cut short can still be great.