A complete list of the oldest players to ever play in the NBA.
|Rank||Player||Age on final NBA game||Years Active|
|1||Nat Hickey||45 years, 363 days||1947-1948|
|2||Kevin Willis||44 years, 224 days||1984-2007|
|3||Robert Parish||43 years, 254 days||1976-1997|
|4||Vince Carter||43 years, 45 days||1998-2020|
|5||Udonis Haslem||42 years, 363 days||2003-2023|
|6||Dikembe Mutombo||42 years, 300 days||1991-2009|
|7||Kareem Abdul-Jabbar||42 years, 58 days||1969-1989|
|8||Bob Cousy||41 years, 150 days||1951-1970|
|9||Herb Williams||41 years, 129 days||1981-1999|
|10||John Stockton||41 years, 35 days||1984-2003|
Nat Hickey played before the NBA was the main league in American basketball, but he coached the Providence Steamrollers in the Basketball Association of America, which was renamed to the National Basketball Association in 1949.
Hickey activated himself as a player for the Steamrollers in two games during the 1947/48 season. He averaged one point and 2.5 fouls over those two games.
Kevin Willis played in 1,522 NBA games between the regular season and playoffs. He retired ahead of the 2005/06 season, then returned in 2006/07 and played five games for the Dallas Mavericks.
Willis won one NBA Championship, which came with the San Antonio Spurs in 2003. He played 21 seasons in the NBA for the Atlanta Hawks, Miami Heat, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Toronto Raptors, Denver Nuggets, and Dallas Mavericks.
One of the NBA's ultimate iron men, Robert Parish never missed more than 10 games in a regular season except for his final season in which he played 43 games at 43 years old. Over his 21-year career, he won four NBA Championships and made nine All-Star appearances, and he suited up for the Golden State Warriors, Boston Celtics, Charlotte Hornets, and Chicago Bulls.
Parish played 1,611 NBA regular season games, the most in NBA history. Three of his championship rings were won with the Boston Celtics in the 80s, and he got himself a ring when he appeared in 43 regular season games and two playoff games for the legendary 1996/97 Bulls team.
Having played in the third-most NBA games ever behind only Parish and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, both Vince Carter's longevity and athleticism have made him into a legend. He entered the league after the high-flying wing became the fifth-overall pick in the 1998 NBA Draft and played through the 2019/20 season.
Suiting up for the Toronto Raptors, New Jersey Nets (now located in Brooklyn), Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies, Sacramento Kings, and Atlanta Hawks, Carter became a journeyman in the latter half of his career.
Carter made eight All-Star appearances: Four with the Raptors, three with the Nets, and one during the season he was traded from Toronto to New Jersey. He averaged 16.7 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 3.1 assists for his career.
Udonis Haslem was such a valuable member in the Miami Heat locker room that they kept him on the roster despite him not appearing in more than 16 regular season games in his last seven NBA seasons. He spent his career with the Heat, where he won three NBA Championships and played many different roles.
A Miami native, Haslem spent 20 years in the NBA with the Heat. He started every playoff game as Dwyane Wade and Shaquille O'Neal led the franchise to its first NBA title in 2006, and he started at least half the team's playoff games as the big three of Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh led the team to back-to-back titles in 2012 and 2013.
At 38 years old, LeBron James is the oldest player in the NBA entering the 2023/24 season. King James has not lost a step as he averaged his fifth-highest number of points per game in 2022/23 with 28.9 points on 50 percent shooting.
James hasn't played more than 70 games in a season since he played all 82 in his final campaign with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017/18, a year in which he also led the league in minutes per game. Time may be catching up with LeBron, but he has adapted his game and a deep Los Angeles Lakers roster should be able to cover for him whenever he isn't feeling 100 percent this season.