August 2, 2001: The Houston Rockets trade legendary big man Hakeem Olajuwon upon his request, receiving back a first and second-round draft pick.
After spending his first 17 seasons as the franchise centerpiece for the Houston Rockets, Hakeem Olajuwon requested to be traded after declining the Rockets' three-year, $13 million deal.
Hakeem had averaged 22.5 points and 11.4 rebounds in his career as a Houston Rocket up to that point, and was regarded as one of the best centers to ever grace the game. He was a two-time NBA Finals MVP and was already the all-time league leader in blocks, with 3,740.
Although it was clear that Olajuwon was on his last legs, he was still expected to be a valuable to contributor to the squad, a role he fulfilled despite battling back injuries.
After averaging just 7.1 points and 7.4 rebounds per game, both career lows, Olajuwon decided it was time to hang them up once the Raptors were eliminated by the Detroit Pistons in the first round of the playoffs.
After retiring, Hakeem still remains active in the basketball community and has been known to pass on his legendary post moves to a whole slew of NBA players over the summer, including fellow Rockets big man Dwight Howard and league stars LeBron James and Kobe Bryant.
Despite finishing his career in Toronto, Hakeem still keeps close ties with the Rockets organization and will forever be remembered as a Houston Rocket.