The French international hub Alexis Ajinça has announced that he will end his professional career. The native of Saint-Etienne, passed by the NBA and European champion 2013, had been absent from the courts since 2019.
“The time has come for me to turn the page as a professional player. It is with these words that Alexis Ajinça announces the end of his basketball career. In a laconic post posted on Twitter, the 33-year-old former pivot thanks his fans, his clubs, and all those who have crossed his path throughout his history with basketball. A long road that had truly ended in 2019, the last time Ajinça had stepped on a floor in pro. It was then under the jersey of ASVEL, his ninth club after four NBA franchises.
A career on hiatus since 2019
For almost four years, the 2.18m pivot had no club. His contract with ASVEL was cut after an altercation with Villeurbanne coach Zvezdan Mitrovic. A new return to France this time ended in failure. But the 2013 European champion will have been used to these round trips between France and the NBA, where he played a total of 274 games.
From BMX champion to NBA player
From his childhood, the young Alexis Ajinça predestined himself rather to BMX, he who collected national and international titles in his category (Champion of France, Europe and vice-world champion). At 12, he measures 1.82m and chooses basketball. Trained at the INSEP federal center, he was drafted in 2008 by Charlotte (20e). After stints in Dallas and Toronto, he returned to France for a successful stint at SIG Strasbourg (All Star Game 2012, final in 2013). Relaunched, his return to the NBA at the News Orleans Pelicans is conclusive (around 6pts average per game, 1er round of the playoffs). A rich career for the specialist in pest dunks.