Retired professional basketball player Dikembe Mutombo has a net worth of $75 million. The NBA career of Dikembe Mutombo spanned 18 years. One of the finest defensive defenders in NBA history, he has been selected to eight All-Star teams. Mutombo’s generosity is well-recognized outside of sports.
Earnings in a Professional Career
Dikembe Mutombo raked in over $140 million in pre-tax earnings throughout his playing career. He made tens of millions more through sponsorships and has continued to appear in national ads for decades after his official retirement date passed.
Childhood: Dikembe Mutombo
A native of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Dikembe Mutombo grew up in Léopoldville, today known as Kinshasa, on June 25, 1966. A member of the Luba ethnic group, he is one of 10 children born to Bamba and Samuel. Mutombo was a student at Bobo College when he was in high school, and he had his sights set on a future in medicine. In his early twenties, he decided he wanted to play professional basketball at the age of sixteen.
Mutombo traveled to the United States in 1987 to attend Georgetown University in Washington, DC, on a USAID scholarship. The school’s head basketball coach, Coach John Thompson, snagged him despite his initial plans to pursue a career in medicine. As soon as he arrived at Georgetown, Mutombo made a name for himself as one of the best shot blockers in the country. He was selected Big East Defensive Player of the Year in 1990 and 1991. Mutombo earned diplomacy and linguistics degrees from Georgetown University in 1991.
The Nuggets are the NBA’s Denver franchise.
The Denver Nuggets selected Mutombo in the fourth round of the 1991 NBA draught. Shot-blocking talents again propelled him to stardom as he was appointed to the NBA All-Star team in his debut season. During the 1993-94 season, the Nuggets relied on Mutombo to carry them to a 42-40 record and playoff berth. After that, he helped the Nuggets pull off a big upset over the Seattle SuperSonics in the playoffs, blocking 31 shots in a five-game series record for him.
However, the Nuggets succumbed to the Utah Jazz in the second round of the playoffs. He was a second-time All-Star selection and the NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 1994-95. In 1995-96, he left the Nuggets to become a free agent, his final season with the team.
The Atlanta Hawks
The Atlanta Hawks signed Mutombo to a $55 million, five-year free-agent contract in 1996. He continued his winning ways as a member of the Hawks’ squad, guiding them to back-to-back seasons of at least 50 victories. As a result, he was named Defensive Player of the Year for the second time. While playing with the Hawks from 1999-to 2000, Mutombo averaged 11.5, including a league-best 14.1, rebounds per game.
Efforts to Help Others
Mutombo’s humanitarian effort is well-recognized outside sports. Dikembe Mutombo founded the Dikembe Mutombo Foundation in 1997 to work towards bettering living conditions for people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In 2004, he also took part in the NBA’s Basketball Without Borders initiative, which aimed to improve facilities in African countries at the time of its launch. Also, Mutombo has been a lifelong supporter of the Special Olympics, acting as a worldwide ambassador and a director on the International Board of Directors.
He is well known for his efforts to help the underprivileged through the Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital, which was established in 2007. There had not been a modern hospital in Kinshasa for over 40 years before the $29 million, 300-bed facility opened in 2012.
Rose, Mutombo’s wife, met when visiting Kinshasa, the city where he was born, in 1995. They have seven children and live in Atlanta, Georgia.
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