Richard Jefferson confirms retirement after 17 seasons
Jason Miller / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Richard Jefferson is hanging up the sneakers.

The 38-year-old swingman confirmed his retirement from the NBA Saturday in a social media post paying tribute to his late father, who died last month in a drive-by shooting:

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Well here’s my first post! In the last month I’ve dealt with two life changing events back to back. My decision to move on from basketball and the tragic passing of Big Rich. The support of my family and friends have been huge. This video was taken after he bbq’d for about 20 people, something he would do a few times every summer. All I would do is tell people that I was having people over to my house and the next question was “Is Big Rich on the grill?” He really was a true OG. I’m going to miss all his one-liners, his cooking and his ability to make a whole room laugh. Until next time!!!! #RIPPLAYAPLAYA #tripleOG PAPA REALLY WAS A ROLLING STONE!!! 😂😂✊🏽

A post shared by Richard Jefferson (@richardajefferson) on

Fresh off Arizona's loss to Duke in the 2001 national championship, Jefferson was drafted No. 13 overall by the Houston Rockets but was immediately dealt to the then-New Jersey Nets. There, he quickly established himself as a contributor and appeared in (and lost) back-to-back Finals in 2002 and 2003. Forming an effective triumvirate alongside Jason Kidd and Kenyon Martin - later it was Kidd and Vince Carter - Jefferson's Nets made three more Eastern Conference finals before the team's core was dissolved after the 2007-08 season.

Thereafter, Jefferson bounced around the league, transitioning from a player who scored 22.6 points per game in 2007-08 into a veteran presence with the Milwaukee Bucks, San Antonio Spurs, Golden State Warriors, Utah Jazz, and Dallas Mavericks.

In 2015-16, at age 35, Jefferson returned to the Finals as a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers, playing 24 minutes per game in the team's historic series comeback win over the Warriors. It would be the first NBA Championship for both Jefferson and the Cavaliers franchise.

Jefferson's final stop came with the upstart Denver Nuggets last season, a 20-game curtain call in which the 37-year-old appeared to relish the opportunity to be a mentor.

In all, Jefferson averaged 12.6 points, four rebounds, and two assists per game for his career, finishing just 96 total points shy of 15,000. He never made an All-Star team, but established himself as a vibrant character in the Association.

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Richard Jefferson confirms retirement after 17 seasons
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