In Profile: Allen Lumpkin
Director of Basketball Administration Allen Lumpkin has been with the 76ers organization for over 30 years. During that time, Lumpkin worked his way up to his current position, where he oversees team travel and player development, including making sure all new players get settled into town, assisting them during their time in Philadelphia, and working closely with the NBA on their player development initiatives, including the Under 20 program among others.
“Lumpy” - as he is warmly referred to by those in the organization – sat down with Drive Magazine to talk about his time with the team:
DM: What have your job titles been over the years?
AL: “I became a ball boy after winning a contest in the Daily News. You had to write in 25 words or less why you wanted to be a Sixers ball boy. I wrote it, I won and that’s how I started in the organization. I was only supposed to do it for one year and then I kept coming back. After we won the championship in ‘83, I worked in the box office. In 1988, I was promoted to Equipment Manager and then became the Director of Travel and Team Services where I handled all the travel for the team. About three years ago, I became the Director of Basketball Administration.”
DM: What are some of your fondest memories?
AL: “They let the ball boys ride on the float the year we won the championship; that was the greatest. That was fantastic. It was a beautiful summer day – not a cloud in the sky. We turned off JFK Blvd., passed City Hall and then went down Broad Street and you saw nothing but people. That was the greatest thing.
“Also, when I was the Equipment Manager, I was in Cleveland with the team and it was the first year we were back in the playoffs. While there, my wife Lea went into labor two months early. The Cavaliers trainer called me and told me that I got a phone call and I had to get home because she was in labor. I made it home in time; my son Allen Jr. was born two days later. [Former GM] John Nash thought we should name him ‘Cleveland’ which I told him wasn’t going to happen!”
DM: You have met and interacted with many, many players over the years. Which players did you become friends with?
AL: “Any of the old guys: Doc, Maurice Cheeks, Bobby Jones, Andrew Toney … all those guys. We grew up together. I started in ‘77, the year that Doc got here, so we all became friends. The year we played the Lakers in the Finals, I hung out with Ervin Johnson. Every time I see him, we always say, ‘Hello’. When you work the visiting bench you get to know the players.”
DM: You have been in arenas all over the NBA for many years. What is it about playing in Philadelphia that is special?
AL: “The fans…passionate fans. All they want is a hard effort every night. That’s all they want – the fans are great. They will always stick by you and will always have our back.”To read more from Drive Magazine, the official magazine of the 76ers, Click Here