Petersen in 1988
February 22, 1962 |
|Listed height||6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)|
|Listed weight||235 lb (107 kg)|
|High school||Saint Louis Park
(St. Louis Park, Minnesota)
|NBA draft||1984 / Round: 3 / Pick: 51st overall|
|Selected by the Houston Rockets|
|Position||Power forward / Center|
|1989–1992||Golden State Warriors|
|Career NBA statistics|
|Points||3,397 (6.9 ppg)|
|Rebounds||2,354 (4.8 rpg)|
|Assists||487 (1.0 apg)|
|Stats at Basketball-Reference.com|
James "Jim" Richard Petersen (born 22 February 1962 in Minneapolis, Minnesota) is a retired American basketball player, and a current assistant coach with the Minnesota Lynx of the WNBA. He played as either a power forward or a center.
High school / College
Petersen, a St. Louis Park native, played high school basketball at St. Louis Park High School, being named Minnesota's Mr. Basketball in 1980, as well as being the first McDonalds All-American from the state of Minnesota.
Petersen was selected by the Houston Rockets in the third round (51st overall) of the 1984 NBA Draft, alongside Hakeem Olajuwon. In the following four seasons, he played with the Texas club, backing up both Olajuwon and Ralph Sampson, who were known as the Twin Towers. In reference to his very light complexion, Petersen was affectionately known as "The Ivory Tower" during his time in Houston. Petersen played in 20 post-season games (averaging six points and six rebounds) as the team reached the NBA Finals, losing 2–4 to the Boston Celtics.
In the 1986–87 season, as Sampson began to struggle with injuries, Petersen achieved career-best averages of 11 points and seven rebounds, playing in all 82 games and starting in 56. He retired in 1992 at the age of 30, after one season with the Sacramento Kings and three with the Golden State Warriors, with totals of 491 games and 3,397 points.
After leaving the NBA, Petersen worked for the National Basketball Players Association in their player programs division, facilitating seminars in NBA locker rooms in topics such as HIV and AIDS, financial planning, substance abuse and career planning for life after basketball. He also coached junior high, high school and AAU basketball teams in La Jolla, California and Minneapolis.