Ralph Sampson III
Sampson with Minnesota in 2009
|Born||January 5, 1990|
|Listed height||6 ft 11 in (2.11 m)|
|Listed weight||253 lb (115 kg)|
|High school||Northview (Johns Creek, Georgia)|
|NBA draft||2012 / Undrafted|
|2014–2016||Maine Red Claws|
Ralph Lee Sampson III (born January 5, 1990) is an American professional basketball player who last played 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. 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 Development League Draft. He went on to average 2.3 points and 2.1 rebounds in 23 games for Reno in 2012–13.
On November 1, 2014, Sampson was acquired by the Maine Red Claws. In 51 games for the Red Claws in 2014–15, he averaged 5.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game. On October 31, 2015, he was reacquired by the Red Claws.
On August 24, 2016, Sampson's D-League rights were acquired by the Windy City Bulls in the expansion draft. However, his rights would be waived before the beginning of the season, and he would be drafted to the Northern Arizona Suns on October 29 in the fifth round. On November 2, he was waived by the Suns.
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. He would also be named a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame for his overall success with the sport, as well as become an assistant coach for the Phoenix Suns for a season.
- "Ralph Sampson III Bio". GopherSports.com. Retrieved November 2, 2014.
- Charlotte Bobcats Announce Roster for 2012 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas
- Ralph Sampson D-League Stats
- Nilan Bisons sign Ralph Sampson III
- Red Claws Round Out Training Camp Roster with Draft, Trades
- "Red Claws Announce Draft Results, Training Camp Roster". OurSportsCentral.com. October 31, 2015. Retrieved October 31, 2015.
- "2016 NBA Development League Expansion Draft Results". NBA.com. August 24, 2016. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
- Emerick, Tyler (October 30, 2016). "NAZ Suns Draft 4 Players, Take Michael Bryson with 1st Pick". NBA.com. Retrieved November 6, 2016.
- "NAZ Suns Waive Draft Pick Ralph Sampson III, Claim Wally Niang". NBA.com. November 2, 2016. Retrieved November 6, 2016.