Jonas Valanciunas

A professional basketball player from Lithuania

Jonas Valanciunas
Jonas Valanciunas Source: Google

Jonas Valanciunas is a professional basketball player for the National Basketball Association (NBA). For the New Orleans Pelicans of the NBA League, he plays center.

Jonas played basketball for over four years in the Lithuanian leagues before signing with the NBA.

He has won a ridiculous number of awards and accomplishments throughout his basketball career.

About Jonas Valanciunas |  Family and Education

In Utena, Lithuania, on May 6, 1992, Jonas Valanciunas was conceived. His parents were never wed.

Jonas grew up with his mother Danute, and as a result, he has her last name. But Jonas Vilkas, his father, and he grew up together in a close bond.

In the past, Vilkas was a rowing coach in the USSR.

In his hometown of Utena, where he attended Utenos Gymnasium, he started playing basketball at a young age.


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He was enrolled in a dance class by his mother because she wanted him to become a folk dancer.

Valanciunas frequently skipped dance classes as a child in favor of playing outside with his buddies.

Basketball was quite well-liked at the time, and it attracted a lot of young people to the sport.

No, he was the same. His father encouraged him to become a better basketball player as he grew up, despite his mother’s opposition to him choosing the sport.

For Jonas to practice, he set up a field and a handcrafted basket.


Jonas was admitted to a local Vilnius training school while still a high school student. His friends already dwarfed him in height, and he excelled in the academy.

With his performance, Jonas quickly caught the attention of the management of the national team.

The athlete successfully defended his spot on the Lithuanian U-16 team as a consequence. He competed for his nation in the 2007 European U-16 Championship, which was held in Greece.


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Jonas was only able to make a lasting impression by competing in the same event the year after, which was hosted in Italy.

Jonas had already stopped folk dancing and was concentrating mostly on basketball games in 2008.

In addition, as he was his mother’s only kid, she began to support him and pledged to provide him with all he needed.

Professional Life and Career

In 2008, at the age of 16, Jonas entered the professional league. With Perlas Vilnius, he participated in the LNKL.

The club moved up to the LKL after spending the 2008–09 season in the second–best league in the nation.

The Lietuvos Rytas then invited him to sign a long-term deal in January 2009.

On January 17, 2010, he eventually made the switch to the Rytas, where he immediately began competing in top divisions.

Their 2010 LKF Cup victory occurred in February. Valanciunas quickly earned the team’s confidence and participated in numerous games.

He garnered various awards and trophies for the team during his two-year stint.


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In the three LKL Finals he participated in between 2010 and 2012, he had outstanding statistics. Additionally, in 2010 they won the LKL championship.

In addition, he competed in three LKL All-Star Games and won each one. He won the MVP prize at the LKL All-Star Game in 2011 and again in 2012.

His level of popularity led to his becoming well-known both in the United States and abroad. The young Lithuanian consequently rose to the position of one of the NBA draft’s top prospects in 2011.

It was starting to happen that he will be able to play in the NBA, the best basketball league in the world.

Raptors of Toronto

After taking part in a brief training session at the NBA camp in Italy, Jonas left for America to attend the 2011 NBA Draft. With the fifth overall pick in the first round, the Toronto Raptors selected him.

Throughout the entire season, the rookie averaged 6.0 rebounds and 8.9 points per game.

He played more games as the 2013–14 season went on, and his stats improved.

He averaged 11.3 points and 8.8 rebounds throughout 81 games. By grabbing the most rebounds in a single playoff game versus the Nets, he also established a record.

Jonas agreed to a contract with the Raptors on August 20, 2015, which would keep him with the organization for an additional four years.


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He was ranked as the 57th-best player in the league by ESPN before the start of the new season.

But compared to prior NBA seasons, he played in fewer games this year because of injury.

He played in 60 games, finishing each one with 12.8 points and 9.1 rebounds.

Upon his return to the court after an extended sabbatical, Jonas led the Raptors to the playoffs this season.

However, owing to his loss in Game 3 against the Miami Heat due to an ankle injury, they were unable to advance to the NBA Finals.

Valanciunas played three more seasons for the Raptors. The franchise eventually traded him to the Grizzlies in 2019.

Grizzlies of Memphis

On February 7, 2019, Jonas Valanciunas and a few other players were moved to the Memphis Grizzlies. On February 12 against the San Antonio Spurs, he played in his first game for the team.

Despite his outstanding 23 points and 10 rebounds in his debut, the team lost the game.

He did not play the rest of the 2018–19 season, though, due to an additional injury he sustained during a game against the Clippers.


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On July 11, 2019, he and the team agreed to a new, three-year contract.

This season, he scored 14.9 points and grabbed 11.3 rebounds per game. In addition, Valanciunas guided his group into the 2020 NBA postseason.

He spent one more season on the Grizzlies’ roster. For the 2020–21 season, he participated in 62 games, recording 17.1 points and 12.5 rebounds.

Pelicans of New Orleans

On August 7, 2021, the Grizzlies exchanged Jonas for the New Orleans Pelicans.

He signed a two-year contract with the team on October 20, 2021, and as of right now, he has appeared in over 45 games for the Pelicans.

He has already participated in games, scoring 18.0 points and grabbing 11.6 rebounds on average. Without a doubt, Valanciunas would have a successful career with the Pelicans.

Jonas Valanciunas’ national sporting career

It is commonly known that Jonas Valanciunas was quite well-liked before signing with the NBA. At the age of 14, he made the senior team and has since represented his nation.

He brought Lithuania its first gold medal in the 2008 FIBA Europe U-16 Championship in Italy.


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Valanciunas was crowned the event’s MVP after dominating everyone with an average of 14.3 points and 11.1 rebounds per game.

Jonas has also represented several age levels of Lithuania’s national teams and has consistently excelled throughout the years.

Recognition & Achievements

His accolades and accomplishments include:

  • MVP LKL (2012)
  • Champion LKL (2010)
  • NBA Second All-Rookie Team (2013)
  • LKF Cup Champion (2010)
  • Player of the Year in the LKL (2012)
  • Young Player of the Year in FIBA (2011, 2012)
  • Risen Star of the Eurocup (2012)

Update on injuries and health

In his career, Jonas has endured numerous injuries, just like many well-known players.

His first significant injury, a fractured left hand, occurred on November 22, 2015. He missed 17 games due to the incident.

Similar to this, he had a right ankle injury during the NBA Playoffs in 2015–16, missing the rest of the competition.

As a result, his squad was barred from the championship game. Additionally, before signing with the Grizzlies, he suffered a dislocated left thumb while playing against the Warriors.


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He frequently missed important games due to minor injuries, just like this. There hasn’t been any recent information about his injuries, though.

He began following the Covid health and safety guidelines in January 2022.

Jonas was found not guilty, but he took a few days off to recover, claiming a non-Covid ailment. He then appeared in court again in early February.

On the Covid Reserve list, Jonas had already appeared twice.

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Relationship Status

Jonas Valanciunas is wed to Egle Valanciuniene, a citizen of Lithuania. Around 2013, the two began dating, and they were wed the following year.

Egle is the child of Vida Aciene, a well-known lawyer and politician in Lithuania, and Remigijus Acas. Both a politician and an economist, Vida is her mother.


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She used to manage a Kaunas-based retail website before meeting him. After being married, they cohabitated in the USA. Two boys were also a blessing for the couple.

On March 12, 2015, their eldest son, Jonas Valanciunas Jr., was born. 2017 saw the birth of their second son by Egle.

Net Worth and Salary | Jonas Valanciunas

One of the most well-known international players in the NBA, Jonas, is thought to be valued at around $5 million.

The NBA league games have already netted the famous player considerable cash. He received a large amount from the Raptors in just his debut season due to the early 2011 draft selection.

During that season, he earned almost $3.3 million annually.


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He earned about $45 million in seven NBA seasons while playing for the Raptors. When he joined the Grizzlies, he continued to receive around the same amount for three seasons.

He presently makes nearly $14 million a year playing for the New Orleans Pelicans. From his NBA career, he has already earned more than $92 million.

He also receives a fair income through speaking engagements at various events, item sales, and brand endorsements.

Body Measurement | Hair, Height, Weight

2022 will mark the 30th birthday of the renowned Pelicans center. He acknowledges his birth on May 6 of each year.

His facial features, to mention his eyes and hair, are stunning blues. A well-fitting long brown beard is another thing he consistently sports.

But in his early NBA days, he typically had a clean shaved appearance.


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The gigantic athlete is 2.11 meters (6 feet 11 inches) tall and weighs about 265 lb (120 kg).

He was fairly lanky and skinny in his teen years. The player has gained a lot of weight since then, though.

As a result, the player often visits the gym with his teammates to work out.

Social Media

Instagram: @jvalanciunas

Twitter: @jValanciunas

Facebook: JonasValanciunas

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who wears the Pelicans’ number 17?

Jonas Valanciunas is currently sporting the number 17 jersey for the Pelicans. He chose that jersey number when he joined the team on August 7, 2021. Since then, he has worn that jersey number to represent the squad in every NBA game.

How many times did Valanciunas score from outside the arc?

More than 140 three-pointers have been made by Valanciunas during his professional career. The Lithuanian center is one of the front-runners for the job. He played in around 655 games before collecting these many threes.

Quick Facts | Jonas Valanciunas

Full Name Jonas Valanciunas
Date of Birth May 6, 1992
Birth Place Utena, Lithuania
Nick Name Not Available
Religion Christianity
Nationality Lithuanian
Zodiac Sign Taurus
Age 30 years old
Height 2.11 m (6 feet 11 inches)
Weight 265 lb (120 kg)
Hair Color Light brown
Eye Color Blue
Build Athletic
Father’s Name Jonas Vilkas
Mother’s Name Danute Valanciunas
Siblings None
Sexual Orientation Straight
Education Utenos Saules Gymnasium (Utena, Lithuania)
Marital Status Married
Wife’s Name Egle Valanciuniene
Kids Two sons
Kid’s Name Jonas Valanciunas Jr., second son’s name- unavailable
Profession Professional basketball player
Food habit Non-vegetarian
NBA Draft 2011
Position Center
  • Lithuanian Basketball League (LKL)
  • National Basketball Association (NBA)
Active Years (2008–present)
Clubs He Played For
  • Perlas Vilnius
  • Lietuvos Rytas Vilnius
  • Toronto Raptors
  • Memphis Grizzlies
Net Worth $5 million
Currently Plays For New Orleans Pelicans
Social Media Facebook, Instagram, Twitter
Merch Notebook, Cards
Last Update October 2022

Written by Jeni Watson

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