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Gerald Green retires from NBA after 12 seasons, joins Rockets' coaching staff

Gerald Green retires from NBA after 12 seasons, joins Rockets' coaching staff
Former Phoenix Suns guard Gerald Green (R), shown Jan. 13, 2014, was best known for his dunking ability. He won the NBA's dunk contest in 2007. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 22 (UPI) -- NBA veteran and high-flying dunker Gerald Green has announced his retirement from the league after 12 seasons.

The former Houston Rockets swingman will join the organization's coaching staff as a player development coach, the team announced Friday.

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Green, a native of Houston, played his final two seasons with the Rockets (2017-19). He missed the entire 2019-20 campaign because of a foot injury and didn't appear in a game last year.

He spent time with multiple franchises after the Boston Celtics selected him with the No. 18 overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft. In 658 career games (118 starts) with the Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Rockets, Dallas Mavericks, Nets, Indiana Pacers, Phoenix Suns and Miami Heat, Green averaged 9.7 points and 2.5 rebounds.

The 35-year-old Green won the NBA's dunk contest in 2007 and finished second the following year.

The flashy dunker is perhaps best known for his "birthday dunk" in the 2008 slam dunk competition, when he blew out a candle on a cupcake that was placed on the back of the rim while throwing down a dunk.

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