On September 21, one of the NBA‘s best-ever sharpshooters, JJ Redick, officially announced his retirement from basketball. After 15 years (two of which were spent with the Philadelphia 76ers), 940 games played, 1,950 three-pointers drained and more than 12,000 points logged, the 37-year-old was ready to make a full-on transition into dad mode.
Although Redick had an incredible career in the Association, he’s not getting out of the game 100% free of regret. When he was asked by Sacramento Kings guard Tyrese Haliburton about whether he would change anything about his career on a live edition of The Old Man & the Three podcast, Redick gave an answer that should please the Sixers faithful.
“You can’t change an outcome because an outcome is out of your control. So, you can change a decision,” he qualified before answering. “I wish there was a way I could’ve gone back to Philly.”
It was a response that prompted uproarious applause from the live crowd at The Bell House in Brooklyn, New York. And, had things played out as Redick clearly wishes they would have, Philly fans may have had more to cheer about in recent years.
Why Did Redick’s Sixers Tenure Come to an End?
After having been a key cog on the Chris Paul-led, Lob City squads in Los Angeles, Redick joined the Sixers during the summer of 2017 on a one-year, $23 million deal. At the time, it seemed like an overpay for a player in his mid-30s who was seemingly coming in to hit an open three here or there while acting as the locker room vet.
In the end, though, Redick earned his scratch. In 2017-18, he scored a career-high 17.1 points per contest while knocking down 42% of his three-point shots.
He returned the following year on another one-year deal and upped his output to 18.1 PPG. Meanwhile, the Sixers took the eventual champion Toronto Raptors to seven games in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, losing by just two points in the elimination game.
Despite coming so close to a title, the Sixers went through something of a soft reboot over the summer. Jimmy Butler flew the coop to Miami and big man Al Horford was snagged away from the Boston Celtics on a massive multi-year deal. Part of the financial fallout of those maneuvers was that Redick was facing a huge pay cut to remain with the Sixers.
“I never got the sense that they didn’t want to bring me back, unfortunately, it came down to a little bit of economics,” Redick later told ESPN’s Zach Lowe. He ultimately accepted a two-year, $26.5 million deal to play for the New Orleans Pelicans.
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Redick’s Other Big Regret: Not Winning a Title With CP3
In terms of an outcome, Redick revealed that the other thing he would change would be to have won an NBA championship with Paul. During the show, he revealed that he had confessed as much to CP3 when he called the future Hall of Famer to tell him about his retirement.
“I had this, like, weird feeling. I was like, ‘I feel like I need to make one more call.’ And I’d realized who that call was — and it was Chris. I called Chris — and I don’t want to get emotional — but I called him and I told him what was happening,” Redick said.
“What I said to him was, ‘The only thing I would change about my career, in terms of an outcome, I wish I’d won a championship.’ And I said, ‘If there’s one person that I played with in my career that I could win that championship with it was you.’ I mean that sincerely — I wish it was Chris.”
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