When the 2019-2020 NBA season began, all players and fans knew that this would be the last year we would see Vince Carter in an NBA uniform. But, because of all of the complications that happened due to COVID-19, there was a slight chance Carter may return for one more year. Unfortunately, it didn’t turn out that way. VC called it quits on the Winging It Podcast, saying “I’m officially done playing basketball professionally.” Carter took us all on a 22-year journey with moments that we will never forget, no matter the team he was playing for. Here is a brief timeline of when and where Vince Carter played during his NBA career:
New Jersey Nets vs Toronto Raptors, January 8th, 2006
This was the year after Vince left Toronto and went to the Nets. It was a very hostile game for Vince and he didn’t receive a very warm welcome back home. The game picks up with about 4 seconds left with Jose Calderon at the free throw line. The Raptors had the lead 104-102. Calderon would miss the free throw and Jason Kidd would grab the rebound and sprint up the court. It was around the 3 point line where he found Vince who turned and shot the ball as the clock winded down. The ball ripped through the Net and silence fell upon the Toronto crowd as the Nets players went absolutely nuts. Not to mention Vince also had 42 points in that game with 24 of them in the fourth quarter
Final Score: 105-104
2000 Slam Dunk Contest
World meet Vince. After the 2000 Slam Dunk Contest, everyone knew Vince Carter’s name. He didn’t do anything unique or use props or outfits. All he did was dunk and Vince just murdered the rim. Even though he was battling other legends including his own cousin Tracy McGrady and Jerry Stackhouse, Vince knew he was going to win. He not only shocked the world but also the announcers and even most of his fellow NBA players who had the best reactions to all of Vince’s Dunks. He won the contest easily and also won the hearts of many across the world. Vinsainty went viral.
2000 Olympics Slam
Vince had already proved himself as a great dunker and everyone in the world already knew that. He just had to make sure in the Sydney Olympics though, on the biggest stage in the world Vince dunked. He dunked over Frederic Weis who played for France. This dunk was just monstrous and is no doubt on a poster in some kid’s bedroom. Vince just went straight over him on his way to the rim. Weis is 7 feet and 2 inches and there was just no hesitation from VC at all. The French Media named in the Dunk of Death as Weis got drafted prior to the tournament, but he never played a game or signed a contract. He avered 14.8 PPG during the Olympics which lead the US team as they would go 8-0 on their way to a Gold Medal.
Alonzo Mourning poster November 7th, 2007
The Nets were playing the Heat in Miami when this dunk occurred and is many fan’s favorite memory of Vince. Carter scooped up a loose ball and put the ball behind the back. Then he attacked the basket and just went straight against Alonzo and threw it down on him. Alonzo tumbled back and was apparently mad at Vince. Carter said that Mourning never talked to him for 7 years because of that dunk. Alonzo was known as a shot-blocker and Vince still got him.
Dallas Mavericks vs San Antonio Spurs, April 26th 2014
When I think of memorable Vince Carter moments this shot instantly pops into my mind. The Mavericks were an 8 seed going into the 2014 playoffs and had to play the one-seeded Spurs. Lead by Manu Ginobli and Tim Duncan, the Spurs got a shot to fall after rolling around the rim forever. This led to the Mavs calling a timeout to discuss what they would do next. That is when Vince got his shot. The ball was inbounded to him on the sideline, where Vince double pumped before letting the ball fly at the buzzer. As it fell through the net the Dallas crowd and playoffs went crazy in celebration.
Final Score: 109-108
These were just a few moments that really stood out to us during Vince Carter’s career. It was not long ago when the Raptors made one of their best decisions ever when they traded to grab Vince Carter. Little did they know that he would be the guy that put the team on the map. 22 years and 7 other teams later VC is calling it a career and what a career it was. He will be forever known as an icon and always a Legend. Half-Man, Half- Amazing, Vinsanity.
Top picture by We are Basket