Shawn Marion puts a cap on length of his NBA career

5 Comments

Shawn Marion is one of just six players drafted in 1999 who are still in the NBA.* (That was 15 years ago, Mr. Boeheim.)

*Elton Brand, Andre Miller, Jason Terry (barely), Andrei Kirilenko and Manu Ginobili are the others.

It’s quite the impressive career for a player who has been so reliant on athleticism. Marion certainly isn’t sticking around based on his shooting form.

But just how long does Marion plan to continue playing?

Dwain Price of the Star-Telegram:

He won’t do what former Dallas Mavericks teammate Jason Kidd did and play until he’s 40.

“No way, no, no way,” Marion said while shaking his head furiously.

“When the season is over with I’m going to evaluate everything I’ve got going on and see what’s what,” said Marion, who turns 36 on May 7. “At the same time I would love to have another championship.”

Marion’s biggest impact comes defensively, though the Mavericks have allowed more points per possession with him on the court this season. He has remained effective by increasingly relying on his craftiness rather than his athleticism, though he’s still pretty springy for his age.

On the other end of the floor, Marion’s game has showed considerable age. Free-throw attempts per field-goal attempt are green, and 3-point attempts per field-goal attempt are blue:

image

Marion has slowed a step, preventing him from getting to the line as often. And unlike the mid 2000s, when he was shooting so many 3s due the Phoenix Suns’ long-bombing identity, Marion has fewer alternatives now. He’s become a spot-up shooter out of necessity.

I hope Marion plays as long as he wants, but at 35, he’s losing control of his ability to determine that. Age is undefeated, and it’s already beginning to take a toll on Marion. It’s only a matter of time until it mandates he retire if he hasn’t chosen to already.