There are only 10 pro athletes from the 1990s still playing today

Nov 21 2018, 10:44 pm

If you remember watching sports in the 1990s, this list is going to make you feel old.

Following the retirement of 39-year-old MLB player Adrian Beltre, just 10 athletes from North America’s four major pro sports leagues that saw action in the 1990s remain active in their respective leagues.

And the list is dwindling quick.

Players on this list vary in age from 39 to 45 years old. Athletes of that vintage typically take a year-by-year approach to their careers, as keeping their bodies pain-free can be a challenge.

There are more remaining 90s players in the NHL than any other league. Five hockey players make up this list, with four still playing starring roles for their teams. Two NFL kickers are on the list, as are two future Hall of Fame NBA players. Just one MLB pitcher made the list, and he may be the next to retire.

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1. Bartolo Colon (free agent)

bartolo colon

Image: Texas Rangers / Twitter

Pitcher Bartolo Colon is 45 years old and looking for a new contract after appearing in 28 games with the Texas Rangers last season.

He began his career in 1997.

Just how old is he?

He’s the only active player that once suited up for the Montreal Expos.

2. Vince Carter (Atlanta Hawks)

vince carter raptors

Image: Toronto Raptors / Twitter

Toronto Raptors legend Vince Carter has hinted that this may be the last season of his NBA career. The 41-year-old began his career in 1998 is a shadow of his former self, but still loves the game.

Just how old is he?

Remember when he won the Slam Dunk Contest? That was 18 years ago.

3. Roberto Luongo (Florida Panthers)

luongo panthers

Image: Florida Panthers PR / Twitter

Roberto isn’t still just playing, he’s playing as good as ever. Though the 39-year-old has had to battle injuries in quick succession in recent years, his numbers have been outstanding.

He posted a .929 save percentage in 35 games last season – the second-highest of his Hall of Fame career.

Just how old is he?

Remember that 12-year contract he signed that everyone agreed he would never see the end of? He might complete it! There’s just three seasons left on his deal.

4. Patrick Marleau (Toronto Maple Leafs)

patrick marleau maple leafs

Image: Toronto Maple Leafs / Twitter

Like Luongo, Patrick Marleau is still a productive NHL player.

The 39-year-old scored 27 goals last season and has 12 points in 21 games this year, his second with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Just how old is he?

He’s basically adopted teammates Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner.

5. Joe Thornton (San Jose Sharks)

joe thornton sharks

Image: San Jose Sharks / Twitter

Picked first overall in the 1997 draft, perhaps Joe Thornton exchanged Fountain of Youth secrets with Marleau while teammates in San Jose.

Just how old is he?

Look at his beard, it’ll tell you… At least it could have before he cut it this season. He looks 20 years younger now.

6. Zdeno Chara (Boston Bruins)

zdeno chara bruins

Image: Boston Bruins / Twitter

Zdeno Chara made his NHL debut in the 1997-98 season with the New York Islanders before being dealt to Ottawa in one of Mike Milbury’s regrettable deals years later. The 6-foot-9 defenceman still going strong at 41 years old, currently sitting second in time on ice with the Boston Bruins.

Just how old is he?

He’s as old as he is tall.

7. Matt Cullen (Pittsburgh Penguins)

crosby cullen stanley cup

Image: Pittsburgh Penguins / Twitter

Unlike the other four hockey players on this list, Matt Cullen was never a star in the NHL. He’s played in zero All-Star Games and never won an end-of-season individual award.

He doesn’t care about that, because he’s got three Stanley Cup rings.

Cullen, 42, began his career in 1997 with Anaheim when they were still known as the Mighty Ducks.

Just how old is he?

He’s had multiple stints with three NHL teams, playing with the Carolina Hurricanes, Minnesota Wild, and Pittsburgh Penguins each on two separate occasions.

8. Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks)

dirk nowitzki

Image: NBA / Twitter

The only player on this list to play his entire career with one team, 40-year-old Dirk Nowitzki has had a storied career. He hasn’t played a game yet this season due to injury, but appeared in 77 games last year, averaging 12 points per game.

Just how old is he?

He was born in West Germany, a country that hasn’t existed for more than 28 years.

9. Phil Dawson (Arizona Cardinals)

phil dawson

Image: Arizona Cardinals / Twitter

Kicker Phil Dawson is still booting the ball in the NFL at the age of 43. There’s reason to believe his right leg might be younger though. He nailed a 57-yard field goal just last season.

Just how old is he?

He was an original member of the new Cleveland Browns in 1999.

10. Adam Vinatieri (Indianapolis Colts)

adam vinatieri

Image: Indianapolis Colts / Twitter

The oldest player on this list, Adam Vinatieri turns 46 in December. He’s 15-for-18 in field goals this season, which includes a 54-yarder. Not bad for an old guy.

Just how old is he?

His pro career began in Amsterdam in the World League of American Football.

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