Kurt Nimphius (born March 13, 1958 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin) was signed as a free agent by the Dallas Mavericks prior to the 1981-1982 season.
Nimphius attended Arizona State where his scoring average increased all four years. He, along with teammates Byron Scott, Fat Lever and Alton Lister, helped lead the Sun Devils to the NCAA tournament in both 1979 and 1980 and was all-Pac-10 in 1980.
Arizona State posted a 22-7 record in Nimphius' junior year, losing in the tournament to Ohio State. His senior year they posted a 24-4 mark before ultimately losing to Kansas in the NCAA's.
Nimphius' name still ranks high in the Sun Devils' record books. He's second all-time in field goal percentage at 58.6% and seventh all-time in blocked shots with 96.
He was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in the third round of the 1980 college draft. Although he attended the rookie/free agent camp, he was not invited to return for the team's regular training camp. He instead went to Europe and played for Ridrigo Chiefi of the Italian Professional League, averaging 18.7 points and 10.5 rebounds in ten games and spent time with Alberta of the CBA.
The Phoenix Suns invited Nimphius to their rookie/free agent camp in the summer of 1981 but he failed to catch on. He was then invited to the Mavs' training camp and signed as a free agent on September 26, 1981.
His career with the Mavericks lasted over four seasons with his best year coming in 1983/1984, the first year Dallas made the playoffs. In that season, Nimphius played in all 82 games averaging 7.9 ppg, 6.3 rpg and finishing seventh in the NBA in blocked shots with 144.
In September of 1984, he signed a three-year contract with the Mavs and again appeared in all 82 games the 1984-1985 season.
After appearing in 13 games for Dallas in the 1985-1986 campaign, Nimphius was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers, in November of 1985, in exchange for center James Donaldson. With his playing time increased in L.A, he posted the best scoring average of his NBA career that season averaging 11.2 points per game.
Following a trade to Detroit, by the Clippers, in 1987, Nimphius' career was a series of one-year stops which included time with the Pistons, the San Antonio Spurs, the Philadelphia 76ers and two years back in Europe which consisted of one season in Spain and a final season, 1990-1991, with Il Messaggero Roma in the Italian League.
In 2001, Nimphius was inducted into the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame for his high school accomplishments on the court in the 1970s.