Who Has Had the Longest NBA Career?

10 legendary players whose careers stood the test of time

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Being drafted or selected to play in a professional sports league is an accomplishment only a small percentage of athletes ever achieve. Turning one season into a full-length career is even more challenging, as some people quickly fade off the court or return to the minor leagues. For every group of players who don’t measure up to a professional league’s standards, there are a select few who immediately establish a presence and don’t leave until they’ve accomplished everything they wanted to on the court.  

Somehow, each individual on this list made it way beyond one grueling season in the NBA and stretched their careers far into the double digits. Not every game or every season is going to be pretty, but these athletes all had the grit to return to the NBA year after year to keep playing the game they loved. Everyone included here played professional basketball for nearly two decades and each one of them impacted the game through their skill and determination to constantly keep improving. Come learn about some legendary basketball players who happen to have the longest ever NBA careers.

10. Paul Pierce (19 Seasons)

9. Shaquille O’Neal (19 seasons)

8. Tim Duncan (19 seasons)

7. Kobe Bryant (20 Seasons)

6. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (20 Seasons)

5. Kevin Willis (21 seasons)

4. Robert Parish (21 seasons)

3. Dirk Nowitzki (21 seasons)

2. Kevin Garnett (21 seasons)

1. Vince Carter (22 seasons)

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