It was a no-brainer for Nick King to play in the Rumph Classic its first few years because of his connection to Danny Rumph and his story.
King, now 40 years old, grew up in North Philly and Olney. He has vivid memories of seeing him around playing at parks or in different tournaments and leagues.
“We all kind of grew up together playing in the same leagues and in the same workouts,” King said.
The 6-foot-7 guard from Coppin State made his mark as the Rumph’s second tournament MVP in 2007 playing for Team Wallace. He said it was so long ago they hadn’t started giving out team shorts yet.
“It was an up-and-coming thing,” King said. “But it was all good competition. When you’re in the championship, that’s a big game. I didn’t even know they were giving out MVPs or anything like that. It was just showing what type of player you were.”
His playing career came to an early, unexpected end when he tore ligaments in his ankle. King played three seasons overseas in France, Switzerland, and Iceland. He landed awkwardly on someone else’s ankle at a tournament in France, requiring surgery.
“As of right now, [the Rumph Classic] is probably the biggest thing in Philadelphia as far as Philadelphia basketball goes,” King said. “We get a lot of pros and people to come back to play in the tournament. A lot of guys who are still in the area play too.”