The only man who can block Dikembe Mutombo's retirement is Dikembe Mutombo.
For 18 years, NBA players have had nightmares about getting fingered by Dikembe Mutombo. Get your mind out of the gutter—we're talking about the infamous finger wag that the 7'2" Houston Rockets center used to taunt people with after he'd rejected them. The 42-year-old Congolese shot blocker, who won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award four times and ranks as the league's second most prolific shot blocker ever (he averaged almost three blocks a game for his career), is retiring after suffering a knee injury in a playoff game Tuesday. So, young punks, it's officially OK to step foot in the "House of Mutombo." Take a tour with Complex as we remember why he is one of the NBA's all-time greats...
THE SNEAKER OF MUTOMBO!
• The adidas Mutombo, which featured a shield with crossed spears and Zaire/Congo textile patterns, dropped for the 1992-93 season and it's still hot. Like, Africa hot. But what would you expect of a signature shoe made for Dikembe Mutombo Mpolondo Mukamba Jean-Jacques Wamutombo?
THE VOICE OF MUTOMBO!
• One listen to his deep, raspy voice and it's clear that Mutombo is the long lost Congolese Muppet. Doubt it? Just listen as Deke talks. It's wacka-wacka-wacky. (As a bonus, check out his Rockets teammates doing their best imitations of him.)
THE MULTILINGUALISM OF MUTOMBO!
• Mutombo graduated from Georgetown University in 1991 with a Bachelors degree in diplomacy and linguistics and speaks English, French, Spanish, Portuguese and five African languages. You may not be able to understand what the hell he's saying in any of them, but still, it's impressive.
THE SEX SCANDAL OF MUTOMBO!
• This is, without a doubt, one of the best—and certainly one of the BIGGEST—sports sex scandals ever. In a 2001 trial against the owner of an Atlanta strip joint called the Gold Club, a former dancer testified that she and other girls were paid to perform sex acts on a number of famous athletes, including the 7'2" Mutombo. One lucky lady is rumored to have domed him out, but that cannot be confirmed, as no strippers have been spotted walking around with giraffe necks.
THE HUMANITARIAN WORK OF MUTOMBO!
• Mutombo could have used the fortune he earned playing ball to buy a gang of Hummers but he's too decent of a man (besides which, those Gold Club dome-outs were complimentary). Instead, he spent millions of dollars improving living conditions in his native Democratic Republic of Congo with the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation and building the Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital in Kinshasa. Where's your hospital, Shaq?
THE FIRST-ROUND UPSET OF MUTOMBO!
• In 1994, Mutombo's Denver Nuggets became the first eighth-seed team to beat a one-seed when they dropped Shawn "The Reign Man" Kemp and Gary "The Glove" Payton's 63-win Seattle SuperSonics squad in the first round of the NBA playoffs. The only other time Mutombo looked this happy was at the Gold Club.
THE FINGER WAG OF MUTOMBO!
• Over the years, Deke rejected more dudes than Tila Tequila. A block is a block, but we can only think of one other digit that says as much as Mutombo's index finger did when he'd follow up a stuff by waving it in another grown man's face.