Ring chaser? That’s not Vince Carter.

Not that the 41-year-old hasn’t had a chance in his 20-season NBA career. The eight-time all-star, who recently agreed to a one-year contract with the Atlanta Hawks, doesn’t have a problem with players who move to a contender. For some the move comes late in a career. For others, especially recently, the move comes much earlier.

Carter played last season with the Sacramento Kings. He will play this season for the Hawks after agreeing to a veteran minimum $2.4 million contract last month. Neither team is high on an oddsmaker’s list for an NBA championship.

“It just feels right for me,” Carter said Thursday of not signing with a team just to win a title. “… I probably could have done that anywhere. I still want to play the game. Whatever minutes are there, I want. I enjoy teaching. I’ll do that for any team. That’s not a question. It’s just who I am. I come in from an era where that’s not how it was so that’s still instilled in me. I don’t have any problem with how it’s done now. It’s just not for me.

“Maybe when I can’t contribute as much, maybe when the game has passed me completely, then maybe I go be part of a team where I don’t play as much and reap the benefits of a championship, then maybe so. I think before that happens I’ll probably retire anyway.”

Carter spoke in advance to an upcoming broadcasting job – a second career he’s already started to purse. Carter will be an analyst for Fox at the junior NBA world championships Aug. 7-12 in Orlando, Florida. He’s already worked for ESPN and TNT and, most recently, was an analyst on game coverage at the Las Vegas Summer League.

Carter began thinking about broadcasting, if and when his current career as a player ends, after taking part in the National Basketball Players Association’s Sportscaster U training program several years ago.

It’s part of the reason he chose Atlanta for his 21st season. Carter will join Kevin Willis, Robert Parrish and Kevin Garnett for the league record for seasons. Atlanta is home to studios for TNT and NBA TV.

“The city itself has a lot to offer for what I want to do as a current player and as I move forward in my next career in the broadcasting world, and some other interests I have that are off the court as well,” Carter said.

Carter has even sought out former player, current broadcaster and Hawks part-owner Grant Hill for broadcasting tips and advice.

Carter played 58 games for the Kings last season, and averaged 5.4 points, 2.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists. He averaged 8.0 points in 73 games for the Memphis Grizzlies the prior season at age 40. He’s a long way from the player that made eight straight all-star appearances and averaged over 20 points in 10 consecutive seasons.

But Carter still believes he can play and contribute. The Hawks wanted to have a strong presence in a young locker room.

“Opportunity,” Carter said of why he chose the Hawks. “It’s pretty simple. It’s opportunity. I still enjoy the game. I still work at the game. It’s a love. It’s tough to walk away. Obviously when it’s time, it’s time, but I’m still passionate about it. It’s still in my blood. The opportunity presented itself and I wanted to take advantage of it. For me, it’s the bigger picture. I still have a lot to offer.”


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.