The NBA has released its list of the top 13 longest-tenured active players with one team. These players have spent more than 10 years with their current teams, and it’s all about loyalty.
This list of active players with one club has been shattered by the offseason. Before joining the Brooklyn Nets, Patty Mills played ten seasons with the San Antonio Spurs. Kyle Lowry, Nikola Vucevic, and James Harden all played for the Raptors, Magic, and Rockets for nine seasons. Cody Zeller played eight seasons with the Hornets before deciding to leave.
In today’s NBA, finding guys who can remain in one position is difficult. Players are forming super teams with their buddies. There are salary cap problems, which pushes players to follow the money at times. Not every player has the same level of dedication as Giannis Antetokounmpo, Steph Curry, and Damian Lillard.
These individuals are among the top 13 current players with the longest stay with a single club.
Nikola Jokic was selected by the Nuggets in 2014, but he did not join the club until 2015, giving him a total of six seasons with the organization.
7 Seasons of Dwight Powell (Dallas Mavericks)
Powell was dealt by the Celtics to the Mavericks along with Rajon Rondo in exchange for Jae Crowder, Jameer Nelson, and Brendan Wright during his rookie season. Since then, he has served as a key reserve off the bench for the club. Powell had his finest season in 2018-2019, averaging 10.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
He got a contract extension after that season. He tore his Achilles tendon in 2019-2020, but he healed in time to play the whole 2018-19 season. Powell has started 108 of the Mavericks’ 424 games.
Marcus Smart has appeared in seven seasons of television (Boston Celtics)
Smart has been named to the All-Defensive First Team thrice and won the 2019 Hustle Award. He has a reputation for outsmarting his opponents. He’s been a part of three Celtics teams that have reached the Conference Finals but not the NBA Finals.
He signed a four-year extension on August 16 that will keep him in town for the next 10 years when his contract expires. Smart is just 27 years old, so he still has plenty of peak years ahead of him. What are the chances? Perhaps he’ll spend the rest of his life in Bean Town.
Kevin Love has appeared in seven seasons of television (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Kevin Love was acquired by the Cavaliers seven years ago. When LeBron James left the Miami Heat to come home, he knew he’d need assistance if he wanted to win a championship. To acquire the rights to the former All-Star and rebounding champion, the Cavaliers surrendered their No. 1 overall selection (Andrew Wiggins), a previous No. 1 overall pick (Anthony Bennett), and additional draft resources.
Love had an instant effect on me. He was to LeBron James everything that Chris Bosh was to him in Miami, except this time he was in Cleveland. He was an All-Star and helped the club reach the NBA Finals four times in a row. Last year, the Cavaliers attempted to trade Love but were unable to locate a suitable partner. This streak may come to an end this year if both parties agree on a buyout.
7 Seasons of Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers)
Although Embiid has only been in the NBA for five seasons, he has been around since 2014. Due to foot problems, the former No. 3 overall selection missed the first two years of his career. Embiid is the biggest basketball star in Philadelphia since Allen Iverson, despite the fact that it took a few years. Last season, the four-time All-Star led the club to a No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference and finished second in MVP voting.
After signing a four-year contract this summer, Embiid isn’t looking to leave either. Embiid has been named to three NBA All-Star teams and three NBA All-Defensive teams. Embiid wants to win a championship for Philadelphia, so he’ll have to be patient.
Rudy Gobert has played in the NBA for eight seasons (Utah Jazz)
In 2013, Gobert and Zeller entered the league at the same time. The only difference is that Zeller was selected fourth overall and never played in an All-Star Game. Gobert was selected 27th overall and has been in two All-Star games, been named to four All-NBA teams, and won three Defensive Player of the Year awards.
Gobert was chosen by the Nuggets, but his rights were transferred to the Jazz on draft night. They’d definitely want that back now that Gobert has evolved into one of the greatest overall defensive players in the modern era. With that stated, he is a staunch supporter of the Utah Jazz and hopes to return the club to the NBA Finals for the first time since 1998.
8 Seasons by Khris Middleton (Milwaukee Bucks)
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Middleton was chosen by the Detroit Pistons, but he was traded to the Bucks at the same time as Giannis Antetokounmpo. Middleton has grown into one of the league’s greatest small forwards, appearing in two All-Star games and helping Milwaukee win the 2021 championship.
Giannis spoke about Middleton and how he “did it” during his postgame statement. It’s something the two have openly said they discussed behind closed doors, about how they wanted to deliver a championship to Milwaukee. The Bucks haven’t had this kind of success in 50 years, but they’re on their way to becoming a dynasty.
8 Seasons of Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks)
Giannis inked a supermax contract in December that will pay him $50 million per year in the future. All Milwaukee fans will agree that this agreement is well worth the money if it results in a championship. There were worries before Giannis signed the supermax that he might depart the club in free agency one day. It brought back memories for local residents of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar departing and joining the Lakers.
There were speculations that Giannis will join the Warriors and create the league’s super megapower squad. Giannis, on the other hand, walked away with a championship. He remained, took advantage of the talent that had been assembled around him, and was named Finals MVP. In Milwaukee, he will be remembered for the rest of his life.
9 Seasons by Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors)
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Since being drafted in the second round out of Michigan State, Green has been a fan favorite in Oakland. The 2017 Defensive Player of the Year isn’t afraid to speak his opinion, perform the grunt work, and contribute to his team’s success.
Green was one of the original three players of the Golden State dynasty, which helped the team win three championships in five years. He’s never mentioned quitting the team. Instead, he has been more outspoken about the players who have joined their team.
9 Seasons – Damian Lillard (Portland Trail Blazers)
Lillard has the potential to be the NBA’s most devoted player. Lillard is one of the most clutch shooters we’ve seen in recent memory. His capabilities are limitless. He doesn’t seem to be bothered by anything. He’s been in All-Star games, been named to All-NBA First Teams, and been nominated for MVP.
Because Lillard wears the jersey, Portland basketball is important. In nine seasons, he has just one Conference Finals to his credit, which he lost in a rout. He’s perilously close to being Chris Paul’s successor. Is his devotion worth the price of ending his career in the same way as Charles Barkley and John Stockton did?
Bradley Beal has been a part of the NBA for nine seasons (Washington Wizards)
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Beal’s position in Washington seems to be perplexing. Rumors about Beal’s trade destination circulated throughout last year. The Nuggets were leading one day. The Heat were supposed to make a deal one day, and the Warriors were even discussed. Beal, on the other hand, played basketball and came close to winning the NBA scoring championship. As the No. 8 seed in the play-in tournament, the Wizards qualified for the first round of the playoffs.
Beal’s contract has one more year remaining on it, so this may be his last appearance on this list. If the Wizards don’t contend straight away, Beal will almost certainly be moved before the deadline. With that considered, his tenure in Washington should be admired since, while facing some difficult opponents, he has never officially requested a transfer.
Klay Thompson has a total of ten seasons under his belt (Golden State Warriors)
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If we’re being technical, Thompson has only played in the NBA for eight seasons, despite spending ten years with the Warriors. Thompson was sidelined for the entire 2019-2020 season due to an ACL tear. Then he missed the whole 2017 season due to a ruptured Achilles tendon sustained during a pickup basketball game in Los Angeles.
He’s a five-time All-Star, three-time champion, one of the greatest overall outside shooters, and past All-Defensive player when he’s healthy. Without Thompson in the center, there is no “Splash Bros.” The Warriors dynasty may be back this year, if he stays healthy.
12 Seasons of Steph Curry (Golden State Warriors)
From Davidson, the skinny boy who could shoot has developed into quite a basketball player. In a few years, Curry will be the highest-paid player in NBA history. This comes after winning the scoring championship the previous season. Curry doesn’t seem to be slowing down. If he remains with the Warriors for the next five years of his deal, he will have spent 17 seasons with the team. Is he going to make it to 20?
Only a few players in the NBA have achieved this accomplishment, including Dirk Nowitzki and Kobe Bryant. Curry, if he plays until he is 40 years old, may be the next player to join that group. Anything is possible after earning a scoring championship at the age of 33.
18 Seasons – Udonis Haslem (Miami Heat)
In the past five seasons, Haslem has appeared in 45 games. He last participated in a regular season game in 2014-2015, when he played in 62 games. As a result, Haslem’s position on the squad is no longer to play. He’s already done enough of it. He has three championship rings, has been in five NBA Finals, and is the all-time leading rebounder for the Miami Heat.
His responsibilities include acting as a coach and assisting head coach Erik Spoelstra. Haslem, who is 41 years old, could coach if he so desired, but he has stayed a player. His leadership is so important to the Heat that they keep resigning him. He just needs two more seasons with the same club to reach 20. Is he going to make it?