Lithuanian center Antanas Kavaliauskas announced that he was retiring from basketball via an Instagram post early Monday. Kavaliauskas, 34, spent the previous three seasons with Zalgiris Kaunas, during which he averaged 5.5 points and 2.6 rebounds in 84 games. He helped Zalgiris reach the 2018 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four, win three Lithuanian championships and two Lithuanian Cups. This past season was cut short by abdominal surgery.
Kavaliauskas enjoyed a successful career in which he played basketball in six countries. After playing college basketball in the United States at Texas Tech, he returned to Europe first with Panionios Athens and then Kavala in Greece. He later played for Caserta and Veroli in Italy, VEF Riga in Latvia, Bilbao in Spain and Rytas Vilnius in Lithuania. A long-time member of the Lithuanian national team, Kavaliauskas was a member of the silver-medal winning squad at EuroBasket 2015.
In his retirement announcement, Kavaliauskas wrote:
"It was not an overnight decision. I made this decision with a calmness in my heart and a smile on my face. Something I have been contemplating for some time now, especially with my injuries this season. Thank you everyone who I had a chance to play with and play against. Thank you to my family for being there every single day. Thank you to all the coaches that I had the opportunity to learn from and work with. Finally a big thank you to BC Zalgiris for welcoming me and giving me the opportunity to play for such an incredible organization. I could not be prouder to have worn the green and white and time I spent in Kaunas and all that we accomplished together will never be forgotten (always in my heart)."