Some of the finest athletes in the world play in the National Basketball Association. From throughout the world, youngsters aspire to improve their abilities and perhaps one day get a chance at the league known as basketball’s top level. On the hardwood new legends are formed — and their names will be remembered eternally alongside other legendary figures who came before them. At times, especially when a team is rebuilding, it’s possible to have several young team players. Below we talk about the youngest teams formed in the NBA.
In 2022, with the latest advancements in nutrition and kinesiology, high performance athletes are younger, quicker, more athletic, and have better fundamental skills. A lot of it can be credited to the advancements in sports science. It allows athletes to condition themselves under near ideal conditions using cutting-edge technology. Also teams are helping their players hyper-train using near limitless resources intended for the purpose of taking their game play to the next level.
It’s also why nearly every team includes young players who are still in school. Front offices recognize that when you recruit a player while they’re young and train them inside the system from the bottom floor, you have a chance at creating a dynasty.
So let’s have a look at which NBA organizations are the youngest among all the talent…
Top 6 Youngest Teams…
#1 – New Orleans
The New Orleans Pelicans underwent a name and location change. The team relocated to New Orleans due to former owner George Shinn, who christened them the Charlotte Hornets. It wasn’t until 2013 that the club changed its moniker to the New Orleans Pelicans.
Since Anthony Davis left for the Los Angeles Lakers in July 2019, New Orleans has been on the lookout for a new franchise player to take over as their basketball leader. That’s where Zion Williamson comes in. The Duke freshman was taken first overall in the 2019 draft. He’s just 21 years old, but he’s flashed some of a superstar’s abilities.
Did You Know… The team’s official mascot is Pierre le Pelican, which was given a name in 2013. His initial design sparked controversy among fans for its frightening features. The character underwent some plastic surgery on his beak and was re-released in February 2014. Given that the brave bird continues to wreak havoc on the other teams on the court, it appears he’ll be keeping his role as mascot for a long time to come.
#2 – Memphis Grizzlies
The Memphis Grizzlies are a team that, on paper, doesn’t have a lot of young talent. However they do have a few players who are still on their rookie contracts. Ja Morant, the second overall pick in the 2019 draft, is one of those players. He’s already making a name for himself as one of the most exciting young point guards in the league. He is averaging over 20 points and 6 assists per game.
Another youngster on the Grizzlies roster is Dillon Brooks. The Oregon product was drafted 45th overall by the Houston Rockets in 2017 but was traded to Memphis on draft night. He made an immediate impact in his first season, winning the 2017-2018 NBA Rookie of the Year Award.
Did You Know… The Grizzlies’ 2019-2020 season opener against the Indiana Pacers was the youngest team in NBA history. They have an average age of 24 years and 193 days.
#3 – Miami Heat
Led by reigning MVP and all-star guard Jimmy Butler, the Miami Heat are one of the youngest teams in the league. Butler is just 29 years old himself. He is surrounded by a slew of young talent, most notably rookie shooting guard Kendrick Nunn. Nunn was undrafted out of the University of Illinois and signed by the Golden State Warriors in 2018. He was then traded to the Miami Heat in 2019. That was part of the deal that sent D’Angelo Russell to the Warriors.
Did You Know… In 2021 the Miami Heat became the first team in NBA history to have five players under the age of 25 score 20 points or more in a game.
#4 – Dallas Mavericks
The Dallas Mavericks are led by one of the youngest coaches in the league, Rick Carlisle. At 61 years old, Carlisle is just a year older than Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. And Cuban knows a thing or two about building a winning team. The Mavericks have a few young players on their roster, but the most exciting of them all is Luka Doncic. They are also considered the youngest team in the NBA.
Drafted third overall in the 2018 NBA Draft, Doncic made an immediate impact in his rookie season. He was named the 2019 Rookie of the Year and led Dallas to the playoffs for the first time since 2015.
Did You Know… The youngest player in Mavericks history is Jalen Brunson. He was drafted 33rd overall by Dallas in the 2018 NBA Draft and made his debut later that year at just 20 years old.
#5 – Orlando Magic
The Orlando Magic have been in rebuild mode for the past few years and have drafted a number of young players with high potential. The most promising of these players is Mohamed Bamba. Bamba was drafted sixth overall in the 2018 NBA Draft and has already shown flashes of dominance on defense. He’s averaging over 7 rebounds and 2 blocks per game and is looking like one of the best young centers in the league.
Another player to watch for the Magic is Aaron Gordon. Selected fourth overall in the 2014 NBA Draft, Gordon has developed into one of the most versatile forwards in the NBA. He’s averaging over 17 points and 7 rebounds per game this season and was named to his first all-star team in 2019.
Did You Know… The youngest player in Magic history is Jonathan Issac. He was drafted sixth overall in the 2017 NBA Draft and made his debut later that year at just 19 years old.
#6 – Boston Celtics
The Boston Celtics are one of the most storied franchises in the NBA. They have a long history of drafting and developing young talent. They are also considered to be the youngest team in the NBA. This season is no exception — as they have a number of young players on their roster — including Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Both players were drafted in the top three of their respective drafts and have already established themselves as some of the best players in the league.
Did You Know… The youngest player in Celtics history is Kyrie Irving. He was drafted first overall in the 2011 NBA Draft and made his debut later that year at just 19 years old.
As the league continues to get younger, it will be interesting to see which teams make the jump to contender status in the coming years.