12 Most Educated Players of the NBA, You won’t believe their Income

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By Hrishi

12 Most Educated Players of the NBA: The National Basketball Association (NBA) is the most followed and celebrated sport in the USA. The NBA is the major professional sports league in North America. It is the second most watched sport in the United States, with over 50% of the population watching it on television or other digital media.

Many major colleges in America, like UCLA, North Carolina, Texas School, Kentucky, etc., produce many top-level NBA players. These educational institutions also have a history of producing some well-decorated players in different sports. They do not compromise at all on the academic front and have a very good record there. We are about to discuss some of the most educated and well-qualified NBA players in the USA.

12 Most Educated Players of the NBA

1. Jeremy Lin

Born in August 1988, Jeremy Shu-How Lin, an American Taiwanese basketball player, came into the limelight as soon as he signed for New York Knicks in 2012, and a rollercoaster ride for this player began. A film was shooted in the year 2013 named Linsanity, which has players journey through rise and fall over the years while playing Basketball. Lin grew up in San Fransisco Bay Area with a very good academic background, maintaining a grade point of 4.2 average during high school.

The kind of his academia and the grade points he was eligible to join Harvard University. He started his Havard journey in 2006, where he maintained a 3.6 CGPA, achieved a bachelor’s degree of arts in economics, and graduated in 2010. He reportedly earned a yearly salary of $11.48 million in 2016.

Setback in getting a scholarship

Despite having a very impressive basketball career in high school, including being a captain for the Palo Alto High School basketball team, he failed to receive any scholarship offers. He might get a scholarship from Stanford University, but Lin only decided to settle at Harvard University.

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Some key highlights of the career of Jeremy Lin

  • He was one of the few Asian American NBA players, natively from Taiwan
  • He also became the first Asian American to win an NBA championship in 2019 by being a team member of the Toronto Raptors.

Team’s for which he played

Lin was signed by the New York Knicks in 2012. After completing Nicks tenure, some of the major teams that he played for are

  • Houston Rockets
  • Los Angeles Lakers
  • Charlotte Hornets
  • Brooklyn Nets
  • Atalanta Hawks
  • Toronto Raptors

2. Dikembe Mutombo

Dikembe Mutombo is basically from Congo, Africa and was a well-decorated student in his early days, he joined Georgetown University on the UNSAID scholarship program in 1991. He has honors in linguistics and diplomacy and was set to become a doctor. When he arrived at Georgetown University, he barely spoke any English, and now he can speak nine languages, 5 of which are African dialects. Georgetown Hoyas basketball coach John Thompson recruited him to play basketball because destiny had to write his own story.

Dikembe Mutombo could achieve more academically than being an NBA star. He was selected for the AII Star team and averaged over 16 points and 12.3 rebounds. He started establishing himself as the best defensive player in the league.

Talking about his academic qualification, in year 2010, he finished his career in professional basketball he went back to school and completed a doctorate. He is very much into public servicing and charitable work, and currently, he runs an organization to help people from his hometown.

Some Key Highlights of the Career of Dikembe Mutombo

  • Mutombo had a well-established and good educational background besides being a star defence player in the NBA league.
  • His father used to work as a school principal in Congo’s Department of Education. He wanted to become a successful doctor and help his people.
  • He has mastered 9 languages, including French, English, and Spanish.
  • Because he was 7 foot 2 inches tall, John Thompson at Georgetown University recruited him to play basketball. After dominating and improving his skills in school, Mutombo joined Hoyas and maintained his career legacy as a good defender.

Mutombo had a well-established and good educational background besides being a star defence player in the NBA league. His father used to work as a school principal in Congo’s Department of Education. He wanted to become a successful doctor and help his people, he has mastered 9 languages, including French, English, and Spanish. Because he was 7 foot 2 inches tall, John Thompson at Georgetown University recruited him to play basketball. After dominating and improving his skills in school, Mutombo joined Hoyas and maintained his career legacy as a good defender.

Team’s for which he played

He played 18 professional seasons in the National Basketball Association before calling it a day.

  • Denver Nuggets
  • Atalanta Hawks
  • Philadelphia 76ers
  • New Jersey Nets
  • New York Knicks
  • Houston Rockets

3. Mason Plumlee

He was born on March 5, 1990, and attended Warsaw Community High School before transferring to Christ School in Aden, North Carolina. Alongside Miles Plumlee, who is an NBA player also. Mason Plumlee is the smartest player ever played in the NBA and is known for sparking academic and basketball court records. He dominated his high school team in his early years with some spectacular playing. He was a 2009 McDonald’s all-American high school.

Some Major Achievements of Mason Plumlee

  • He helped the team of the North Carolina High School Athletic Association state championship at a record of 99-8 over his last 3 years.
  •  He won a silver medal with the USA Under 18 national basketball team.
  •  While he was at McDonald’s back in 2009, his average score was 15.3 points, 10.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 2.5 blocks per game.

Team’s for which he played

  • Brooklyn Nets
  • Portland Trail Blazers
  • Denver Nuggets
  • Detroit Pistons
  • Charlotte Hornets

He primarily plays at the forward and centre positions

4. Jaylen Brown

Jaylen Brown is among the most successful players in NBA; he was born on October 24, 1996, and attended Joseph Wheeler High School in Marietta, Georgia. The funny thing was Jaylen Brown was at the risk of not picking up in the NBA draft as considered “too smart”.

In his early school career, he helped his team to win the GHSA (Georgian High School Association) state championship. When he was at a University level, he studied Magentic Chemistry.

He was able to take a master-level class during his first semester class at Berkeley’s Cultural Studies of Sports. He was among the best chess players in the Berkeley chess team. Brown also learned fluent Spanish at the college level and was very serious about learning more international languages.

He always said that NBA is just one of the areas of his interest he wants to learn about meditation, history and also some philosophy. He was always criticised for being “too smart” to play NBA professionally. In 2016 CBA ran an article about Not to overlook Brown simply because he was intelligent.

Some Major Achievements of Jaylen Brown

Apart from being brilliant in academics, Jaylen Brown has had many achievements throughout his career.

  • Jaylen Brown was named as 4th best recruit in his class in an event done by ESPN.
  •  Brown won the gold medal in 2014 as a member of the FIBA America championship; he was a member of the basketball U18 men’s team.
  •  Apart from being a very good basketball player, he was very good academically and won many awards as a student.

Team’s for which he played

  • United States national basketball team
  • For his current team which is Boston Celtics he plays at the position of small forward and shooting guard.

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5. Gordon Hayward

Gordon Daniel Hayward was born on 23 March 1990 and is a professional basketball player for NBA’s Boston Celtic. He belongs to Indiana and has attended Brownsburg high school in Brownsburg, which is in Indiana. From the early days of his education, he has shown a keen interest in athletics, though he was fond of basketball and always dreamed of playing it professionally.

He has also completed tennis practice with her twin sister, Heather. During his early days, he was about to quit playing basketball to pursue his career in tennis further. He was afraid to have an average height for basketball players, as his parents are average too. He was forced to develop strong guard skills. In 2010 in his college days, he led Butler’s Bulldogs to a championship match. He has selected for NBA all-star game in the year 2017.

Some Major Achievements of Gordon Hayward

  • Hayward averaged 13.1 points and a 6.5 rebounds score per game during his early triumph at the Horizon League. He was also named Horizon Newcomer of the year.
  •  He was selected for National Team in U19 World Cup, held in Auckland, New Zealand. He did not fail to amaze the selectors with his performances.
  •  He was named an NBA all-star in the year 2017.
  •  He also holds many major awards, like Horizon player of the year and the first 2x team all horizon league.

Team’s for which he played

  • Utah Jazz
  • Boston Celtic
  • For his current team which is Charlotte Hornets he plays at the position of small forward and power forward.

6. Chris Dudley

Chris Dudley was born on February 22, 1965, in Stamford, Connecticut, and is known for his agility on the basketball court former professional NBA player and is now an active politician also. He played more than 850 games in 18 seasons in his professional career. Inside the court, he was known for his defensive skills as a shot blocker and rebounder. He also played in the 1999 NBA finals alongside with New York Knicks. His descendants are of Hungarian origin. In his school days, he played basketball at Torrey Pines Highschool, which is in San Diego, California and later attended the prestigious Yale University.

At Yale University, he played NCAA basketball for the Bulldogs from the year 1983 to the year 1987. He earned a degree in Political Science and Economics from Timothy Dwight College. In his early days, he was diagnosed with diabetes, but it did not impact his career as a professional NBA player.

Achievements of Chris Dudley

  • In a total of more than 850 games, he scored 3457 points with an average of 3.9 per game, which is remarkable.
  •  He had about 374 assists, which makes 0.4 assists per game, with more than 1027 shots, which makes 1.2 blocks per game, and 5457 rebounds, which makes up to 6.2 rebounds per game.
  •  Chris Dudley also holds one infamous record of missing 13 consecutive free throws back in 1990.

Team’s for which he played

During his illustrious career, Chris Dudley is known to play with 5 majors team, which are

  • Cleveland Cavaliers
  • New Jersey Nets
  • Portland Trail Blazers
  • New York Knicks
  • Phoneix Suns
  • Portland Trail Blazers

7. Rajon Rondo

Born on February 22, 1986, in Kentucky, he attended Eastern High School. From his initial days, he was believed to be one of the smartest kids on the block. He was alongside his 3 siblings in those days, his family condition was not too satisfactory, and Rondo’s mother had to do extra shifts to support the family. Initially, Rondo was focused on playing football but later on developed an interest that lasted forever to become a professional basketball player. He has a neck to frustrate his coaches this was his way of being “too good for his own good.”

He was one of the most horrible yet smartest students of his teacher, his math teacher used to give him special algebra questions to keep his brilliant mind occupied. Math remained his favourite subject, and he was known to teach math classes while touring the school.

Achievements of Rajon Rondo

  • Rajon Rondo has averaged more than 7 assists per game and 27 points as a junior.
  •  He leads his school basketball team to the championship in the prestigious Louisville International Tournament.
  •  In 2007, Rajon Rondo was named a McDonald’s All-American.
  •  After enrolling at Kentucky university, he leads his team in multiple wins over Louisville, South Carolina and Central Florida.
  •  In 2006, Rajon Rondo left the school and was selected 21st overall by Phoneix Suns.

Team’s for which he played

During his career as a professional basketball player, Rondo was known as the troublemaker for coaches, and this also resulted in his early departure from playing in NBA. He almost played for 9 top teams they are.

  • Boston Celtics
  • Dallas Mavericks
  • Sacramento Kings
  • Chicago Bulls
  • New Orleans Pelicans
  • Los Angeles Lakers
  • Atlanta Hawks
  • Los Angeles Clippers
  • Los Angeles Lakers
  • Cleveland Cavaliers

8. Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook was born on 12 November 1988 in Long Beach, California. From his early school days, he was determined to play professional basketball along with his that-time best friend Khelcey Barrs, though he was of a very average height and body weight, standing about 5 foot 8 inches tall and around 65 kg. Westbrook entered Leuzinger High School as a point guard, but he was not entertained in his early days due to his average height.

In his senior year of college, Westbrook averaged 25.1 points with almost 8.7 rebounds, 3.1 steals and 2.3 assists and with his help, his college team achieved a 25-4 record. He was running wild that season, recorded 14 double-doubles, scored 30 odd points on various occasions, and received a career-best of 51 points in 2006.

Some Major Achievements of Russell Westbrook

  • Russell Westbrook has represented his national team twice and won a gold medal in the 2010 FIBA World championship.
  •  He also won a gold medal in the 2012 Olympic games.
  •  He is 7 times NBA all-star.
  •  Russell Westbrook has won 2 times NBA all-star games, the most valuable player.
  •  He was selected 4th overall by Seattle Supersonic in NBA 2008 draft.

Team’s for which he played

Russell Westbrook has played for 4 major basketball teams as a Point Guard

  • Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Houston Rockets
  • Washington Wizards
  • Los Angeles Lakers

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9. Tom McMillen

Charles Thomas McMillen was born on May 26, 1952, in New York perhaps is one of the least famous NBA players due to his brief competitive career, but academically and in terms of another glorifying career, his name stands tall. He was a number 1 player in 1970, coming out from Mansfield, Pennsylvania McMillen played for Terrapins during his early years from 1971 to 1974, being a professional basketball player. He was a team member of the USA basketball team, which lost to the Soviet Union in the final of the 1972 Olympics.

He was good in academics from his early days and received a B.S. from the University of Maryland in chemistry.

Some Major Achievements of Tom McMilen

Tom did not have a very illustrious career being a sportsman, as a politician, he seemed more active and dedicated towards the work. Here are some of his achievements mixed with his performance inside the basketball court.

  • Tom McMillen was drafted as a 9th pick in the first round of the 1974 NBA draft and picked by Buffalo Braves.
  •  While at Oxford University, he was a member of the Oxford University basketball team, from where he went to play for an Italian club named Virtus Bologna.
  •  He represented Maryland’s 4th district from 1987 to 1993 when he was elected to the U.S congress as a Democrat.

Team’s for which he played

Though he had a very brief, illustrious career, he played for over the top 5 teams.

  • Virtus Bologna
  • Buffalo Braves
  • New York Knicks
  • Atlanta Hawks
  • Washington Bullets

10. Chris Bosh

Christopher Wesson Bosh was born on March 24, 1984, in Dallas, Texas region. He was a well-decorated player who used to play at the Centre and as a Power forward for his team. From very early in his life, he developed a habit of playing basketball in his courtyard. He was also an expert in Karate and gymnastics, though he loved to dribble around at the basketball court as he was tall and well-built, so he was more of a natural player. In his initial days of playing basketball, he used to play as a first baseman. Academically Bosh was a rising star during his student life, a member of the National Honor Society and several other student engineering organizations. During his school days, Bosh led Lincoln High School, in Dallas, Texas, to the number 1 ranking in the country. He had a perfect season of 40-0 in the USA Today National Championship. He was named high school Player of the year by Basketball America.

Achievements of Chris Bosh

  • He was named Powerade player of the year in Texas during his early days.
  •  He was named McDonald’s and the first team all-American by Parade.
  •  Named the “Mr. Basketball” by the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches.
  • Won a gold medal for his country in basketball at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
  •  Won a bronze medal in the FIBA World Championship held in Japan in 2006.
  •  Won another bronze in FIBA Americas U18 Championship in the year 2002.
  •  Bosh was selected 4th by Toronto Raptors in the 2003 NBA draft.

Team’s for which he played

  • Toronto Raptors
  • Miami Heat

11. Victor Oladipo

Victor Oladipo was born on May 4, 1992, in Silver Spring, Maryland, U.S.A, though he is an Afro- American and his descendants are from Nigeria. Victor was raised by his who used to work as a public health executive, and his mother, who was professionally a nurse. In his early days, he used to go to DeMatha Catholic High School, which was in Maryland. Though he rejected the scholarship from various premier colleges like Notre Dame, Xavier, and Maryland before continuing to Indian University, later on, he admitted that he liked the overall atmosphere around the college full of basketball vibes. Talking about academics of Victor, he was a very bright student and graduated with a degree in communication (sports) before finally pursuing his career as a professional basketball player.

In his college days, while pursuing his degree, he scored 19 credits in the final semester, which was beyond amazing.

Some Major Achievements of Victor Oladipo

  • He won 2x NBA all-stars in the year 2018 and 2019.
  • Won NBA all-defensive first team in the year 2018.
  •  He was sporting news player of the year in 2013.
  •  He was 2x big ten on all defensive team in 2012 and 2013.

Team’s for which he played

  • Orlando Magic
  • Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Indiana Pacer
  • Houston Rockets
  • Miami Heat

12. Kelly Olynyk

Kelly Olynyk was born on April 19, 1991, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He was a Canadian player who came into the limelight while competing in AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) and non-AAU in the United States during his school days. He also represented Canada in their junior national team. While getting a scholarship from renowned universities like Nort Carolina State University and Providence College, he settled down at Gonzaga University. He also played in the college basketball team of Gonzaga University named Gonzaga Bulldogs, where he won NCAA All-American honors in 2013.

Achievements of Kelly Olynyk

  • He won an NBA All-Rookie second team in the year 2014.
  •  Boston Celtics selected him as the 13th overall pick in the 2013 NBA draft.
  •  He was WCC player of the year in 2013.

Team’s for which he played

  • Boston Celtics
  • Miami Heat
  • Houston Rockets
  • Detroit Pistons
  • Utah Jazz

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