In 2005, the NBA changed the rule by which players apply to the NBA draft. The rule essentially states that a player must be 19 years old during the year of the draft and be 1 NBA season removed from his high school graduation. It's the reason someone like LaMelo Ball chose to play in Australia's NBL for a year following high school and why Jalen Green most recently spent a year on the G League before being drafted.
There has been a lot of talk that the NBA is seriously considering moving the age limit down to 18, which could be effective as early as the 2024 NBA draft. While the rule wouldn't affect most players, elite talent, like 7'4" Frenchman, Victor Wembanyama, who turned 19 on January 4th, would already be playing in the NBA.
Regardless, several players left their mark at the age of 18 prior to 2005.
Here are the 20 youngest players to ever appear in an NBA game.
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John Willkom is the author of Amazon best-selling basketball books: Walk-On Warrior and No Fear In The Arena. John is an avid reader, sports fan, and father to two incredible little girls.
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