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Kurt Rambis
Position(s) Forward
Jersey #(s) 31, 30, 18
Listed height 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m)
Listed weight 213 lb (97 kg)
Born February 25, 1958 (1958-02-25) (age 52)
Cupertino, California
Career information
Year(s) 1980–1995
NBA Draft 1980 / Round: 3 / Pick: 58

Selected by New York Knicks

College Santa Clara
Professional team(s)
Career stats (NBA)
Points     4,603
Rebounds     4,961
Assists     931
Stats @
Career highlights and awards

Darrell Kurt Rambis (AKA Kyriakos Rambidis, Kiriakos Rambidis) (in Greek: Κυριάκος Ραμπίδης; born February 25, 1958) is a retired Greek-American professional basketball player and current head coach for the National Basketball Association's Minnesota Timberwolves.



Rambis was born in Cupertino, California where he grew up in the Fairgrove 'Eichler' neighborhood; his number is retired at Cupertino High School. He graduated from Santa Clara University, where he played from 1976 to 1980, becoming its second leading rebounder and all-time leading scorer with 1,736 points. During his Santa Clara years he was awarded the WCC Freshman of the Year and Conference Player of the Year as a senior. His jersey #34 was retired on December 29, 2008.[1]


NBA Years (1980-1995)

Rambis was drafted by the New York Knicks as the 58th pick in the 1980 NBA Draft, but he was subsequently waived by the Knicks before playing in Greece, where he also holds citizenship. There he joined the Greek League club AEK Athens, under the name Kyriakos Rambidis, and he won the Greek Cup in 1981.

He was re-signed by the Knicks in 1981 but never played a game for them. His success as an NBA player started when he was signed as a free agent by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1981. Rambis spent most of his 14 seasons in the NBA with the Lakers, winning championships in 1982, 1985, 1987, and 1988. Rambis also played for the Charlotte Hornets, Phoenix Suns and Sacramento Kings before returning to the Lakers in 1993.

During his playing days, Rambis was a favorite among the Lakers fans because of his status as an over-achieving underdog and ultimate team-player. Known for his defensive and rebounding skills, Rambis also was an efficient clean-up man on offense, with his field goal percentage reaching 59.5% at the peak of his career. He was remembered in both Santa Clara and Los Angeles for his all-out effort and willingness to do the "dirty work" that many players do not embrace. Rambis usually wore a thick moustache and thick-rimmed black glasses, prompting Lakers announcer Chick Hearn to nickname him "Superman" (in reference to the character's alter ego, Clark Kent). He finally retired with the Lakers in 1995 after 14 years in the NBA.

Assistant coach for the Lakers (2002-2009)

After retiring from his playing career, he briefly coached the Lakers franchise during the 1999 "lockout season" following the firing of coach Del Harris. He achieved moderate success, registering a 24-13 record in the regular season before being swept by the San Antonio Spurs in the 1999 Western Conference Semifinals. When Phil Jackson was hired as head coach, Rambis served as the Lakers' assistant general manager. He later became an assistant coach for three years in 2002, helping the Lakers reach the 2002 and the 2004 NBA Finals, the former of which was won. He was hired again the following year, along with former player Brian Shaw, as an assistant coach,[2] helping the Lakers to another pair of finals in 2008 and 2009, winning in the latter attempt.

Head Coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves (2009-present)

In 2007, Rambis interviewed for the Sacramento Kings coaching job. He was a finalist again in 2009 to coach the Kings, and after serious discussions, he was offered the job, but he wanted more than a two-year contract and more money than was offered, so he turned the team down.

On August 8, 2009, Rambis was announced as the new head coach for the Minnesota Timberwolves, agreeing to a contract believed to be worth 4 years and $8 million. Rambis succeeded Kevin McHale, infamous for taking him down in Game 4 of the 1984 NBA Finals.

Outside Basketball

Rambis also had a recurring role as Coach Cleary in the family drama 7th Heaven. He also guest-starred in season one of Sweet Valley High in episode thirteen "Club X" as a friend of Elizabeth. Rambis made a cameo guest appearance in season 8 of the hit show Married With Children. Rambis is also mentioned in the songs "Blao!" by rapper Hot Karl and "Mayor" by Pac Div. In "Blao!", the line states "I'm wearing the goggles that Kurt Rambis used to sport." The song was featured on NBA Live 2003. In "Mayor", the line states "your boy hustle hard like Rambis for the Lakers."

Coaching record

Regular season   G Games coached   W Games won   L Games lost
Post season  PG  Games coached  PW  Games won  PL  Games lost
Team Year G W L W–L% Finish PG PW PL Result
L.A. Lakers 1998–99 37 24 13 .649 2nd in Pacific 8 3 5 Lost in Conference Semifinals
Career 38 25 13 .658 8 3 5


External links

Preceded by
Kevin McHale
Minnesota Timberwolves Head Coach
Succeeded by
Current Head Coach
Preceded by
Del Harris
Los Angeles Lakers head coach
Succeeded by
Phil Jackson


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