February only had 28 days (29 during leap years), but are those days enough to contribute to the pool of NBA players? You bet! February is the second-most common birthday month for NBA players. The retired and active popular NBA players born in February are actually a pretty interesting bunch, so why don’t we check out who they are?
Before doing so, let’s find out which month ranks first as the most common birth month of NBA players.
What Month are Most NBA Players Born In?
It was already mentioned that February is the second-most typical birth month for NBA players. So, which month is the first? Apparently, it’s March! There is no definite way to explain why that is so, but it’s worth mentioning that June is the second most popular wedding month after September, so it may have something to do with it.
You may not have thought about it before, but being born on a particular month could give kids an early advantage in their athletic development. Most sporting leagues divide the participants by calendar year. Therefore, younger players born from January to March are more physically mature than their peers born in the later months. Of course, it all evens out as they approach their teenage years, but there is no denying that early birth month kids possibly have a significant headstart.
What Basketball Players Were Born in February?
Current NBA Players Born in February
Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets (February 19, 1991)
Jokic last year just became the second league MVP that got drafted in the second round. (The other is Willis Reed.) What’s even scarier is that the Joker is arguably playing better basketball this year. His PER is higher, averaging 26 points, 13.8 rebounds, and 8.1 assists on 57% shooting.
Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks (February 28, 1999)
Luka is already among the best NBA players at age 22. If he could start strong and finish strong, the Slovenian Boy Wonder has all the tools to become the league MVP. Doncic is good for 28.2 PPG, 9.3 RPG, and 8.6 APG this season. Give him a couple of seasons, and he’ll be at the top of the list of popular NBA players born in February.
Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors (February 8, 1990)
Thompson is one-half of the vaunted “Splash Brothers.” Although not as individually accomplished as Steph Curry, Thompson is one of the better defenders at his position. He is a three-time NBA champion and made the All-Star team five seasons in a row from 2015-19.
Fred VanVleet, Toronto Raptors (February 25, 1994)
FVV has just been named an All-Star, a testament to the kind of season he’s having. He is averaging career-highs in points (21.2), rebounds (4.6), and assists (6.7). Not bad for an undrafted player.
Rajon Rondo, Cleveland Cavaliers (February 22, 1986)
Rondo is a shell of his former self, but he was in the conversation during his heyday as one of the best court generals in the NBA. He won two championships as Celtic and a Laker. Although he is not the athlete he once was, his basketball IQ is still an asset that’s not going away anytime soon.
Andrew Wiggins, Golden State Warriors (February 23, 1995)
Like VanVleet, Maple Jordan was named a first-time All-Star this season, which is memorable given that he was voted in as a starter in the midseason classic. He is a vastly underrated defender and has improved his outside shooting the past couple of seasons.
D’Angelo Russell, Minnesota Timberwolves (February 23, 1996)
It’s ironic that Russell, who shared the same birthday with Wiggins, was traded for each other back in 2020. Overall, the Warriors probably won the trade since they got Wiggins and Jonathan Kuminga in the process. However, the T’Wolves got a player in a position of need, and they already got a budding star in Anthony Edwards. The result? Minnesota is probably going to the postseason for the first time since 2018.
Jamal Murray, Denver Nuggets (February 23, 1997)
The Nuggets are sixth in the West right now, but if this guy was healthy, they’d probably be in the top 4. Murray is one of the most dynamic combo guards in the league and capable of getting hot at any stretch of the game. In the 2020 NBA playoffs, Murray averaged 27 points in the bubble, including 47 and 50-point games in the first round vs. Utah.
Alex Caruso, Chicago Bulls (February 28, 1994)
Call him the Bald Mamba or the Bald Eagle, Alex Caruso is a fan favorite everywhere he goes. He does not average flashy numbers, but he is an absolute menace on the defensive end. Anthony Davis and LeBron James may be the front and center of the Lakers’ successful championship run in 2020, but Caruso helped things tilt in their favor.
Other NBA basketball players born in February:
- Devonte’ Graham, New Orleans Pelicans (February 22, 1995)
- Elfrid Payton, Phoenix Suns (February 22, 1994)
- Bobby Portis, Milwaukee Bucks (February 10, 1995)
- Kentavius Caldwell-Pope, Washington Wizards (February 18, 1993)
- Coby White, Chicago Bulls (February 16, 2000)
- Paul Millsap, Philadelphia 76ers (February 10, 1985)
- Derrick Jones, Jr., Chicago Bulls (February 15, 1997)
- James Johnson, Brooklyn Nets (February 20, 1987)
- Ben McLemore, Portland Trail Blazers (February 11, 1993)
- Josh Jackson, Sacramento Kings (February 10, 1997)
- Drew Eubanks, Portland Trail Blazers (February 1, 1997)
Retired NBA Players Born in February
Michael Jordan, February 17, 1963
If there ever was an official frontrunner as the greatest basketball player of all time, it’s this guy. MJ has put the NBA on the map like no one ever did with his flair for scoring, aerial acrobatics, and insane drive to win. Jordan dominated the 1990s by winning six championships, but he was a monster of a player before that. In 1988, he became the only player in NBA history to win Defensive Player of the Year, league MVP, All-Star game MVP, and the scoring title in the same year.
Charles Barkley, February 20, 1963
Barkley was at one time the most dominant offensive force in the basketball world. He averaged a double-double year in and year out except his rookie season. Among Sir Charles’ accolades are a league MVP in 1993, five All-NBA first-team selections and 11 All-Star nods. Barkley remains one of the most recognizable retired greats because of his stint in the award-winning show NBA on TNT.
Bill Russell, February 12, 1934
Only a handful of people can be in the GOAT conversation, and this guy is certainly one of them. Russell won 11 championships in 13 seasons and was a five-time NBA MVP. Although he never averaged more than 19 points a season, he does other things on the defensive end than any player. He had ten seasons averaging over 20 rebounds, and if only the NBA listed blocks as official stats back then, he’d be the clear-cut leader in that category.
Julius Erving, February 22, 1950
Dr J, as he was fondly called, was one of the most exciting players ever to play the game. During his playing days, he was a walking highlight film and won individual and team accolades in the ABA and NBA.
Other retired NBA players born in February:
- Joakim Noah (Feb. 25, 1985)
- Stephon Marbury (Feb. 20, 1977)
- Alonzo Mouring (Feb. 8, 1970)
How Do NBA Players Celebrate Their Birthdays?
1. Michael Jordan
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This year, Jordan was seen partying in NYC early with his wife, Yvette Prieto. Although there are no crazy stories here, he was still probably the fun-loving guy he was back in his playing days. The cigar in his hand is a dead takeaway.
If you’d like a more lavish MJ birthday story, check out his celebration back in 2020, including a tribute to Kobe Bryant.
2. Charles Barkley
Barkley was a more private person than his friend Jordan, but the guy knows how to have fun. In the days leading to the 62nd NBA All-Star game, which is days before his 50th birthday, Sir Charles was seen jumping on the back of one of his bodyguards as rapper Flo Rida performs.
3. Bill Russell
Russell took to Twitter asking for suggestions on what his wife should put on his birthday cake. In the end, what he got was a giant cake with 85 candles on it. It truly was “85 and thankful to be alive.”
Thanks to my wife for all the work she put into my cake, candles, not so much 😂 Glad we had the 🔥 extinguisher on hand #85&StillAlive “Every day I wake up ABOVE ground, is a good one” #BillRussell@NBA @NBAonTNT @celtics @TwitterSports @BleacherReport @SLAMonline @TheCrossover pic.twitter.com/qlEjjfgtOv
— TheBillRussell (@RealBillRussell) February 12, 2019
4. D’Angelo Russell
D’Lo celebrated his 23rd birthday by dropping 40 points against Charlotte in 2019. A fantastic game on your special day should be something on your career bucket list as a basketball player.
5. Stephon Marbury
Marbury was known as a headcase during his NBA tenure only to tone down the antics when he became a basketball legend in China. Speaking of China, he celebrated his 37th back there by getting assaulted with a cake by (presumably) his teammates.
Wrapping Things Up: Popular NBA Players Born in February
The roster of NBA players born in February is nothing less than spectacular. Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Julius Erving, and Bill Russell are among the most popular NBA players born in February. Active players include Nikola Jokic, Luka Doncic, and Klay Thompson. Actually, that’s not surprising at all since February is the month with the second-most NBA birthdays despite being only 28 days long.
Want to know when your favorite NBA players are celebrating their birthdays? We have created a list of all the birthdays of the most popular players in the league. Check them out below:
Cover photo by Keith Allison is licensed under CC BY 2.0 / modified from original