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A minute is a unit of time in a basketball game. There are forty-eight minutes in each NBA basketball game, excluding overtime. As five people from one team will be on the court at any given time, a total of 240 minutes can be distributed in regulation among a team in an NBA basketball game.
For players, the total number of minutes played in a season—and the average number of minutes played per game—are both tracked as statistics.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the all-time leader in minutes played with 57,446. Karl Malone (54,852), Dirk Nowitzki (51,368), Jason Kidd (50,111), Kevin Garnett (50,052), and Elvin Hayes (50,000) are the only other players with 50,000 or more minutes played in a career. Most of Abdul-Jabbar and Hayes's minutes can largely be attributed to the amount of playing time that star players had in the late 1960's and early-to-mid 1970's. Abdul-Jabbar played 40 or more minutes per game from the 1969–70 season to the 1975–76 season, while Hayes played 40 or more minutes per game from the 1968–69 season to the 1974–75 season and from the 1976–77 season to the 1977–78 season.
- "NBA & ABA Career Leaders and Records for Minutes Played". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved May 19, 2019.
- "Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Stats". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved May 19, 2019.
- "Elvin Hayes Stats". Basketball-Reference.com. Retrieved May 19, 2019.
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