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Nick Collison, the last Sonics Lifer, retires after 15 years in the NBA



After 15 years in the NBA, Nick Collison, the last remaining Oklahoma City Thunder player from Seattle Supersonic, leaves the league. He stayed with the franchise for his entire career.

"I've been staying here for a long time," Collison wrote in an ESPN story by Royce Young, "but now it's time to go."

Collison was a rarity in the NBA, with the team that designed him for so long. The only active players to have spent ten or more years with the team that designed them are Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili, Dirk Nowitzki, Udonis Haslem, Mike Conley, Russell Westbrook and DeAndre Jordan.

A As a four-year Kansas Jayhawks player and Big 1

2 Player of the Year, Collison was drafted by the Sonics as # 12 in the 2003 draft. He missed his entire rookie season to shoulder injuries but later became a role-playing player and occasional starter through his best years in OKC.

Most memorable, he starred alongside Kevin Durant's young OKC Thunder team, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and Serge Ibaka, who went to the NBA Finals. The team would trade Harden the following offseason.

"There were a few other tummy beats," Collison said, "but I will not go into that here and the 30 for 30 will be really good, it will probably have to be a four-part miniseries."

Collison was experiencing also the Durant and Westbrook drama when he signed with conference rival Golden State Warriors. Although most of his teammates were not shy about expressing contempt for their former colleague, he had a warm mention for him, as did Russ.

"I love KD," Collison said. I miss him I played my best basketball with James [Harden] I wish we'd had more time I feel like a proud big brother watching Russ who becomes both the player and the man he is I really appreciate all the battles that we've gone through. "

Collison will always be a fan of OKC and Seattle and a rare example of a basketball fan who has captured the hearts of fans in two cities, too just as a role player.

Although he played only 75 minutes throughout the season due to the many reactions of the Thunder fans …

His presence on the field is missed.


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