Penn State Hoops Alum & Denver Nuggets General Manager Calvin Booth Wins NBA Championship

A second Penn State men’s basketball alum is an NBA Champion.

Calvin Booth, a Nittany Lion from 1995 to 1999, clinched the 2023 NBA Championship as the general manager of the Denver Nuggets Monday night. The Nuggets took the series in five games over the Miami Heat to claim their first NBA Championship in franchise history.

Booth began his service in Denver as the Nuggets’ assistant general manager in 2017 and was promoted to the team’s general manager in 2020. He signed an extension with the franchise in October to remain the Nuggets’ general manager through the 2024-25 season.

Since taking over Denver’s front office in 2020, Booth and the Nuggets have recorded a 148-88 record through the previous three seasons en route to its first NBA Championship.

As a Nittany Lion from 1995 to 1999, Booth averaged 11.3 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 3.8 blocks per game. The 6’11” center was named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in 1998 and ranks first in program history with 428 blocks. That total remains ranked No. 2 in Big Ten conference history, too.

Booth was drafted by the Washington Wizards as the 35th overall pick in the 1999 NBA Draft. He rostered with several NBA teams throughout his 10-year professional career including the Wizards, Seattle SuperSonics, 76ers, Bucks, Timberwolves, and Kings. Booth averaged 3.3 points, 2.8 rebounds, and one block per game across his career.

After his retirement from professional basketball, Booth worked with the New Orleans Pelicans as a scout and then moved north to operate as the Minnesota Timberwolves’ director of player personnel from 2013 to 2017.

Booth will join Bob Weiss as the two Nittany Lions to win NBA Championships. Though Booth’s championship was earned off the court, Weiss, a Penn State basketball alum from the Class of 1965, earned an NBA Championship with the Philadelphia 76ers in 1967.

Booth’s son, Carey, was previously committed to the Nittany Lions as a Class of 2023 recruit but requested his release from the program following Micah Shrewsberry’s departure to Notre Dame. The four-star has since recommitted to the Fighting Irish under Shrewsberry.

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About the Author

Keeley Lamm

Keeley is a junior journalism major from Richmond, Virginia, and is Onward State's managing editor. She also talks about awesome stuff on our podcast, Podward State. Keeley is a lover of grilled cheese and Kevin Jonas. If you'd like to share your thoughts on the superior Jonas Brother, feel free to contact her on Twitter @keeleylammm or send your best joke to her email [email protected].

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