View Full Version : Looks Like Karl Malone Gave Up

07-01-2004, 11:58 AM
According to the Salt Lake Tribune, Karl Malone is retiring....

Malone may call it a day

By Phil Miller
The Salt Lake Tribune

Achilles had his heel. Karl Malone has his knee.
One of the most indestructible men in basketball history, facing months of rehabilitation from knee surgery with vitually no chance of meeting his self-imposed mandate of "100 percent" health next season, has decided to end his 19-year NBA career, several league sources said Wednesday.
"He's totally at peace with his decision," one said.
Malone spent Tuesday in a Southern California hospital, undergoing surgery to patch up the medial meniscus in his right knee, cartilege torn during Game 2 of last month's NBA Finals. The injury, aggravated when Malone played Games 3 and 4 despite the pain, is more serious than the avulsion he suffered in the same knee in December. That condition kept Malone, who missed just six games in 18 seasons with the Utah Jazz due to injury or illness, out of 39 Lakers games last season.
It was also the reason Malone declared, after the Lakers fell to Detroit 4-1 in the Finals, that "I'll have to be 100 percent, not 95, not 99," in order to return for a 20th season.
After being examined two weeks ago by his own doctors, who discovered the damage was considerably worse than the sprained ligament the Lakers had claimed during the finals, Malone realized that 100 percent recovery was impossible for an athlete who will turn 41 years old July 24.
Since surgery was his only recourse, followed by a rehab regimen that would cost him at least two months of next season, Malone instead has decided upon a graceful exit from the sport that transformed a small-town Louisiana kid into one of the most famous athletes in the world.
Lakers spokesman John Black could not be reached for comment.

"This is the last one for me, the last bridge, the last guy who played for me, so it's a little sad," said Frank Layden, who as coach/general manager of the Jazz in 1985, changed the course of Utah history by selecting a Summerfield, La., native who was so overwhelmed by the moment, he wept. "But he's going out on his terms, so I'm happy for that."
Malone informed Jazz owner Larry Miller of his decision a week ago, and discussed it with Jazz coach Jerry Sloan over the weekend at Sloan's home in McLeansboro, Ill. He postponed surgery -- the first operation of his life, ending a streak of health virtually unfathomable in modern pro sports -- in order to attend a memorial service for Sloan's wife, Bobbye.
While the sometimes-mercurial Malone could still reverse course, the seriousness of his knee surgery, combined with the murky future of the Lakers, makes his decision virtually final, the sources said.
Malone's departure starts the clock running on his certain induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame five years from now, but abruptly concludes his quest for two NBA achievements that once seemed within reach. Malone falls 1,459 points short of becoming the NBA's greatest scorer. And he retires without the world championship that he craved so much, he left the Jazz a summer ago to sign on with the Lakers for a minimum-wage salary.
That Malone's health abandoned him last month when his ultimate goal was so close -- he played just 39 minutes in the final three games of the championship round, even sitting in street clothes for the finale -- is an irony undeniably cruel.
"I thought if he hadn't been hurt, they would have won it," Layden said.
But Malone's accomplishments will only appear more mountainous as his career fades. Drafted 13th by the Jazz in 1985 after being passed over, shockingly, by franchises that blundered by doubting his work ethic, the 6-foot-9 power forward helped transform what was once one of the NBA's sad-sack franchises into a two-time finalist, each time falling two games short of bringing a world championship title to Utah.
Honored as the league's Most Valuable Player in 1997 and 1999, Malone surpassed 40 points a remarkable 44 times, and 50 points four times, shooting an incredible 72 percent from the field (making 80 of 111 shots) in those four games.
And his yin-yang duet with point guard John Stockton, a public and private partnership as serendipitous and unprecedented as Lennon and McCartney, will stand as a legacy as powerful as the 36,928 points -- more than any man in basketball history save Kareem Abdul-Jabbar -- he scored.
"I'm so proud of him," Layden said. "He's been a credit to the game. He did a great job for this city and this franchise.
"Now, it's on to the Hall of Fame."
Tribune staff writer Steve Luhm contributed to this story.

07-01-2004, 12:00 PM
I hated him, and his joining the lakers just magnified my hate for him, but I have to admit he was a great player, and in a way I was looking forward to seeing him pass Kareem.

It is sad that injury forced him to retire, instead of him retiring on his own will, but I am glad that he didnt win a championship before reggie... :D

07-01-2004, 12:01 PM
Karl Malone of the Utah Jazz was one heck of a player & I respect that guy.

Karl Malone of the Los Angeles Lakers...I have little respect for.

I am neither sad nor glad he's leaving the game.


07-01-2004, 12:03 PM
It's time for the world's richest African-American redneck to get out on the road driving his big-rig. Will he ever tell us what he whispers to himself before he attempts his free throws?

07-01-2004, 12:11 PM
He was one of the dirtiest players in the league.

07-01-2004, 12:15 PM
I'll miss him.... :cry:

07-01-2004, 12:17 PM
I have to be honest, I thought this thread was going to be about George Karl when I clicked on it. I think he should return to the league to coach.

07-01-2004, 12:31 PM
Great player, but extremely dirty. So, I'll say too bad he has to leave this way, but don't let the door hit him in the *** on the way out.

07-01-2004, 12:37 PM
I'm all with MSA, until he mentions George.

I loved to watch Karl play...but I lost my respect for him when he sold out to the Lakers. Now, no ring and no single team lifetime legacy either.

So he's what 40? (Ive been on this 9-5 since he was 2). Time to retire. :cry:

<BTW who is BOA...OMG :o >

07-01-2004, 12:40 PM
See ya punk! :unimpressed:

07-01-2004, 12:41 PM
Good riddance. :wave:

Congrats on your selling out for NOTHING! :devil:

Pig Nash
07-01-2004, 12:58 PM
Good riddance. :wave:

Congrats on your selling out for NOTHING! :devil:

07-01-2004, 01:16 PM
Glad to see him go. He was/is a dirty player. HE put up great numbers and will definitely be a HOFer, but the bad outweighs those accomplishments/

07-01-2004, 01:19 PM
I'm surprised nobody's mentioned his dogging Reggie last fall.

I'll be honest, one reason I was hoping the Pacers would win a title was so Reggie could stand at a podium and say, "Well, some people jump ship whenevr it suits them and others decide they'd like to play for a title."

Or something like that.

07-01-2004, 01:19 PM
I'm surprised nobody's mentioned his dogging Reggie last fall.

I'll be honest, one reason I was hoping the Pacers would win a title was so Reggie could stand at a podium and say, "Well, some people jump ship whenever it suits them and others decide they'd like to play for a title."

Or something like that.

07-01-2004, 02:16 PM
<BTW who is BOA...OMG :o >

Shes a pop singer in S.Korea and Japan.

07-01-2004, 02:25 PM
Any way you put it Karl Malone was a great player, one of the greatest players to ever play the game. He may have been a dirty player but he was a great player.

He very well could be the greatest PF of all time

I wish he would have won a ring during his career with the Jazz, I hate to see great players not get a ring and Karl was a great player.

I never really liked the guy, hate him with a passion and i'm not sad he has retired. I'm glad he is retired but I still have the up most respect for the guy.

07-01-2004, 04:41 PM
Uh oh. :D

Looks like Karl hasn't retired, yet.


Lord Helmet
07-01-2004, 06:36 PM
Great player, its a shame an injury forced him to retire.