The 34-year-old athlete reflected on his career — and infamous 72-day marriage to the reality star — as he announced his retirement from the NBA on Tuesday, March 26.
“The irony of my career is that I finally figured out what kind of player I was when I got to the Nets. … I felt like I knew who I was, finally. And then I met a girl who happened to be really famous, and I got married, and … damn,” Humphries wrote in a blog post for The Player’s Tribune. “Look, I should have known what I was getting into. I was definitely naive about how much my life was going to change. But the one thing that really bothers me is whenever people say that my marriage was fake.”
Humphries and Kardashian, 38, tied the knot in front of E! cameras in August 2011. Less than three months later, the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences. It would take nearly two years for their divorce to be finalized.
“There’s definitely a lot about that world that is not entirely real. But our actual relationship was 100% real,” Humphries wrote. “When it was clear that it wasn’t working … what can I say? It sucked. It’s never easy to go through the embarrassment of something like that — with your friends, with your family…. But when it plays out so publicly, in front of the world, it’s a whole other level. It was brutal.”
He continued: “I didn’t know how to handle it, because I never thought I was going to be famous in that way. I remember having this moment when I was getting booed so hard in Philly, and I thought to myself, ‘Why exactly are they booing me, though? Is it just because I’m That Guy from TV? Do they think I was trying to be famous? Is it because they think I disrespected the game of basketball?’ The last one killed me, because all I’ve ever wanted to be known for was basketball.”
Humphries added that he experienced a lot of “anxiety” in the months following his split from Kardashian.
“There was about a year where I was in a dark place. I didn’t want to leave my home. You feel like … I don’t know … the whole world hates you, but they don’t even know why,” he wrote. “They don’t even know you at all. They just recognize your face, and they’re on you.”
The basketball player admitted that he often lied when people asked him if he was “that guy” while out in public.
“I’d say, ‘Ha! Nah, I just look like him.’ Or I’d say, ‘Nah, I’m Blake Griffin. People get us confused,” he wrote, referencing another NBA player, who happened to date Kardashian’s sister Kendall Jenner in the past. “I didn’t want to be Kris Humphries. It’s the craziest feeling in the world, not wanting to be yourself. And I didn’t even want to say anything to defend myself, because it felt like I couldn’t win. You can’t go up against the tabloids. You can’t go up against that machine. There’s no point. And even if I played that game, I felt like it would be disrespecting the game of basketball.”
While a source told Us Weekly in October 2018 that Humphries was “enjoying the single life,” Kardashian went on to marry Kanye West in 2014. The couple share three kids — North, 5, Saint, 3, and Chicago, 14 months — and are expecting their fourth child, a baby boy via surrogate.
Before Humphries signed off on his goodbye blog post, he made a subtle nod to West’s song “Cold,” which referenced the former Brooklyn Nets star and former part-owner Jay-Z.
“I’ll admit, I had fell in love with Kim/ Around the same time she had fell in love with him/ Well that’s cool, baby girl, do ya thang/ Lucky U ain’t had Jay drop him from the team,” West sang on the 2012 track.
“And of course, thank you to Jay, for not dropping me from the team,” Humphries wrote on Tuesday. “Thirteen good years and out. Sincerely, Kris.”
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