He worked out for the Knicks over the summer, but after failing to make the roster, Raja Bell says he’s no longer interested in returning to the NBA and is officially retired.
“Earlier this year I shut it down,” Bell told Talkin Hoopz. I’m 37, I have three boys, I do miss it, but physically it wasn’t realistic for me to keep training and keep putting my body through what I’ve been putting it through for the last 20 years.”
The veteran guard says while there’s always of piece of him that wants to play, he’s not physically prepared to answer the door if an NBA team comes knocking later in the season.
“To be ready to help somebody in the playoffs, you have to be trained and have to be in shape,” Bell said. “Not training, not having been in the gym for the last month, I wouldn’t entertain anything like that. I’d be flattered, but I’d have to say no because I don’t think I’d be able to live up to my end of the bargain at this point.”
Bell leaves behind career averages of 9.9 points, 1.7 assists, and 2.8 rebounds per game over his 12-year career. Known for his pesky defense, the former Suns standout found himself on the NBA’s All-Defensive First Team in 2007, and All-Defensive Second Team in 2008.
As he transitions away from the hardwood, Bell continues to stay close to the game, running basketball camps in the Miami area. Bell also works as a broadcaster for ESPN 360 and ESPN U.
“I’m enjoying retirement, and trying to find out what the next chapter is going to hold for me.”