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William (Billy) Stansbury Thompson (born December 1, 1963 in Camden, New Jersey) is a retired American professional basketball player in the NBA. He spent a 5-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat, and registered one minute of court time with the Golden State Warriors in 1991.

Thompson played competitive basketball at Camden High School.[1]

Thompson, a 6' 7" small forward from the University of Louisville, where in his senior season he was part of the Cardinals squad that won the 1986 NCAA Championship. He was selected 19th overall in the 1986 NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks but was part of a draft-day trade sending him to the Los Angeles Lakers, where he was a reserve member of the Lakers teams that won back-to-back NBA Championships in 1986-87 and 1987-88. He was then left unprotected in the 1988 NBA expansion draft and was selected by the Miami Heat, where he was a starter for the Heat's inuagural game and averaged 10.8 points per game in Miami's expansion season. As a part-time starter in 1989-90, Thompson averaged 11 points per game. Following his NBA career Thompson went to play in Israel for Hapoel Jerusalem B.C.. Along with Israeli star Adi Gordon Thompson led Hapoel to two State Cup titles. He also played for Fenerbahçe in Turkey.

Having won an NCAA championship his final year with Louisville in 1986 and an NBA title with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1987, Thompson is only one of only a very few players in basketball history to win an NCAA championship and an NBA Championship in consecutive years, some others being Bill Russell (University of San Francisco 1956, Boston Celtics 1957), Henry Bibby (UCLA 1972, New York Knicks 1973) and Earvin Johnson (Michigan State 1979, Los Angeles Lakers 1980).

References

  1. ^ Strauss, Robert. "IN PERSON; Hoop Dreams Revisit Camden", The New York Times, February 13, 2000. Accessed April 6, 2008. "Legends have grown up around its stars, from the Sunkett brothers and Itchy Smith in the 1960's to Billy Thompson and Milt Wagner, teammates in the early 1980's, both of whom went on to play for the Los Angeles Lakers.

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