Thanks to the lockout you’ve probably read or heard how long average career of NBA player really is, and you can easily google it but… it’s not up-to-date information and there are very few details about it…
For example, how average NBA career length has changed through league’s history?
Is it so much longer now than it used to be? How exactly is it calculated?
How does this average career span differs for NBA starters and deep reserves?
I’ll answer those and many more questions in this post… but let’s start with the description. I collected data from basketball-reference.com for every season from 1946-47 to 2010-11, then I removed multiple occurrences in one season [usually due to trades] and finally counted how many times player appeared on the list.
Simple, right? Such sequence gave me an average NBA career length of 4.869 seasons for 3668 players.
But you’ve already knew that so let’s begin the fun part…
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