Ralph Sampson III
Sampson with Minnesota in 2009
|No. 50 – Maine Red Claws|
January 5, 1990 |
|Listed height||6 ft 11 in (2.11 m)|
|Listed weight||240 lb (109 kg)|
|High school||Northview (Johns Creek, Georgia)|
|NBA draft||2012 / Undrafted|
|2012–2013||Reno Bighorns (D-League)|
|2013–2014||Nilan Bisons (Finland)|
|2014–present||Maine Red Claws (D-League)|
Ralph Lee Sampson III (born January 5, 1990) is an American professional basketball player who currently plays for the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Development League. He played college basketball for the University of Minnesota.
High school career
Sampson attended Northview High School in Johns Creek, Georgia where he led them to the Georgia State Championship as a freshman and sophomore. As a senior in 2007–08, he averaged 19.3 points, 10.3 rebounds and 7.0 blocks per game in leading Northview to its first state tournament appearance and a 21-9 record.
During his freshman season at the University of Minnesota in 2008–09, Sampson started every Big Ten Conference game, helped the Gophers earn an NCAA tournament bid, and finished second on the team in both rebounds and blocked shots per game. Sampson started at forward and center in his sophomore and junior seasons for the Gophers and saw his minutes, points, and blocks per game increase each year. However, Sampson's senior year at Minnesota was a disappointment due to injuries. As one of the lone veterans on the team, Sampson's stats declined as he played nearly six fewer minutes per game than he did his junior season while averaging only 7.9 points and 4.6 rebounds per game. After injuring his knee during a practice in March, Sampson was inactive for the rest of the season including the Big Ten tournament and the postseason NIT. He joined Kevin McHale and Mychal Thompson as one of the only Minnesota centers to amass more than 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, and 200 blocks during their respective collegiate careers.
After going undrafted in the 2012 NBA draft, Sampson joined the Charlotte Bobcats for the 2012 NBA Summer League. On November 2, 2012, he was selected by the Reno Bighorns in the third round of the 2012 NBA D-League draft. He went on to average 2.3 points and 2.1 rebounds in 23 games for Reno in 2012–13.
Sampson is the son of Ralph Jr. and Aleize Sampson, and has three siblings: one older sister, Rachel, a younger brother, Robert and a younger sister, Anna. His father was the number one overall pick in the 1983 NBA draft and played nine seasons in the NBA, earning NBA All-Star honors three times and Rookie of the Year honors in 1984.