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Jason Williams announces retirement

Joe Murphy/NBAE/Getty Images

MEMPHIS, April 18, 2011 – Memphis Grizzlies guard Jason Williams announced his retirement from the NBA today, ending his 12-year pro career.

The 6-1, 190-pound guard leaves the NBA with career averages of 10.5 points, 2.3 rebounds and 5.9 assists in 788 games (667 starts) over 12 years (1998-08, 2009-11) with the Sacramento Kings, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat and Orlando Magic.

A member of the inaugural Memphis Grizzlies in 2001, Williams retires as the franchise’s all-time assists leader (2,069) and ranks in the top 10 in team annals in assists per game (7.0, 2nd), three-pointers made (500, 2nd), three-pointers attempted (1,543, 2nd), steals (372, 5th), free throw percentage (.817, 5th) and points (3,400, 10th).

The 35-year old averaged 2.0 points, 1.1 rebounds and 1.9 assists in 10.9 minutes in 27 games this season with the Magic and Grizzlies, who signed him as a free agent on Feb. 7. The Belle, W.Va. native missed the final 17 games of the regular season due to low back soreness in what was his second stint in Memphis.

Williams won the 2006 NBA Championship with Miami, starting all 23 playoff games and averaging 9.3 points, 2.0 rebounds and 3.9 assists to help the Heat capture the franchise’s first title.

Selected by Sacramento with the seventh overall pick of the 1998 NBA Draft, “J-Will” brought an exciting style and unique flare to the league before becoming one of the NBA’s most steady floor generals, regularly finishing among the league leaders in assist-to-turnover ratio.