Iguodala returning to Warriors for 19th NBA season

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Andre Iguodala will play a 19th and final NBA season with the Warriors
Andre Iguodala will play a 19th and final NBA season with the Warriors

Andre Iguodala will be putting off retirement for another year after announcing he will return to the Golden State Warriors for a 19th NBA season.

Iguodala, who will turn 39 in January, revealed his decision on Friday on the Point Forward podcast he hosts with former player Evan Turner, adding that the 2022-23 season will be his final one.

Iguodala won the fourth NBA championship of his career when the Warriors defeated the Boston Celtics in six games in the NBA Finals in June.

He admitted he was leaning towards retirement during the summer before being convinced by Stephen Curry and several other members of the Golden State organisation to return for one more season.

"I'm letting you know, Steph, this is the last one," Iguodala stated in reference to Warriors superstar Curry.

"I'm gonna blame a few people," he also joked. "Steph Curry is one person I'm gonna blame. As a group I'm blaming Draymond [Green], Steph and Klay [Thompson], [head coach] Steve Kerr a little bit and [general manager] Bob Myers.

"They just really showed me a lot of love. They really helped me see my presence outside of physically playing basketball, but also Steve was a big culprit in terms of 'listen, we really need you on the court'."

Iguodala, a 2011-12 All-Star and the MVP of the 2015 NBA Finals, played in just 31 games last season while averaging 4.0 points and 3.7 rebounds, and was used sparingly during Golden State's postseason run to the franchise's fourth title in eight years.

The Warriors still value the two-time NBA All-Defensive Team member for his contributions on that side of the ball, however, as well as his leadership and influence on the team's younger players.

Iguodala returned for a second stint with the Warriors by signing a one-year contract in August 2021. He previously spent six seasons with the franchise from 2013-19 before a two-year run with the Miami Heat.

"I came back last year to make sure we got this right, like 'we not gonna waste Steph's years'," Iguodala remarked. "We won the [championship] and I was like, 'alright.' And [Curry] was like, 'nope, I need you back for another one'."

Iguodala broke into the NBA as a first-round pick of the Philadelphia 76ers in 2004 and has averaged 11.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and 4.2 assists over 1,223 regular-season games.

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