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After spending the last 17 years with the San Antonio Spurs, Tony Parker decided to leave the team and will play for the Charlotte Hornets next season.

Via Player’s Tribune, the four-time NBA champion thanked his former team and head coach Gregg Popovich for giving him the opportunity to play in the best league in the world.

“I might not have even made it to the league at all, if Pop had not decided to give me a second chance to make a first impression on him. He invited me back in for another workout, and I made sure not to mess it up,” Parker wrote in his letter.

“I played a lot better against Lance this time. He still gave it to me pretty good, but I held my own a little bit. And I think I showed off some of the things that I could do on the court. And man, it’s crazy. Because the next thing you know, I’m watching the draft, and it’s — With the 28th pick in the 2001 Draft, the San Antonio Spurs select Tony Parker, of Racing Club Paris, France,” he added.