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Pacers’ Myles Turner, Thaddeus Young react to Darren Collison’s sudden retirement

Myles Turner, Darren Collison, Thaddeus Young

Collective shock across the basketball world in reaction to the abrupt retirement of Darren Collison, most assumed, was limited to media and league followers. The veteran point guard, poised to earn an eight-figure salary in free agency in the final years of his playing prime, must have informed the Indiana Pacers about his stunning decision, right? Wrong. As Thaddeus Young and Myles Turner told HoopsHype’s Alex Kennedy, they were just as shocked by Collison’s announcement as anyone else.

Young insisted that Collison had never even hinted at retirement, and that they were recently discussing their prospects for free agency. After collecting his thoughts, Young expressed extreme admiration for Collison.

“I wish my brother and good friend well in his next stages in life and in all of his future endeavors going forward,” he said. “He was one of the best competitors I’ve ever played with. He played with fire, energy and desire every night. He’s definitely a teammate I’d want to go to war with any day. I feel blessed to have played with DC.”

The 31-year-old announced his decision in an essay published on The Undefeated. A Jehovah’s Witness, he’s stepping away from the game to devote his life to to his faith and family.

Turner attended multiple meetings of Jehovah’s Witnesses with Collison. Still, even he was blindsided by Collison so suddenly retiring from the NBA.

“DC was one of my favorite guards I ever played with,” Turner said. “He constantly challenged me, but also constantly reminded me how good I was. I completely support and respect his decision.”

Darren Collison, a 10-year veteran, averaged 11.2 points and a career-best 6.0 assists per game last season, shooting 40.7 percent from three-point range.