Former NBA Player John Hummer Excelled at Basketball, in Business, and as a Twin Commander Pilot

John Hummer has lived an interesting life. As a kid, he excelled both on and off the basketball court. He earned a scholarship to play basketball, which led to the NBA. However, what most fans don’t know is that being a pro basketball player is only one part of his life. After the NBA, Hummer started a venture capital firm and became a certified Twin Commander pilot.

John Hummer’s NBA career

Hummer used his basketball skills and intelligence to earn a scholarship to Princeton, where he played for three seasons. Standing at 6-foot-9, he was a dominate big man. Hummer garnered enough attention that he was selected 15th overall by the Buffalo Braves, who later become the LA Clippers, in the 1970 NBA draft. Interestingly, Hummer was the first pick ever selected by the Braves franchise.

Throughout his NBA career, he played for three different teams: Buffalo, Chicago, and Seattle. Although Hummer had height, he was playing in the Big Man era, where seven-footers were dominating the league. He never really excelled at the NBA level. Despite the talent and height, he only played for six seasons. Arguably his best season was his rookie year; he averaged 11.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, and 2 assists per game. 

Hummer’s business ventures

Following his NBA career, Hummer capitalized on his intellect and got his MBA at Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 1980. Nine years later, he co-founded Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, which was supposedly the first venture capital company that focused exclusively on software companies.

Although many consider Hummer’s NBA career as mediocre, there is no denying that his business career was an incredible success. Today, Hummer’s company makes multi-million dollar investments to multiple companies every year. Likewise, the company has invested in over 100 ventures that have been at the forefront of PCs, software, enterprise computing, internal applications, among other cutting-edge technologies. His company’s investments have expanded generations of computing processing. 

Hummer’s pilot certification

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As if becoming a pro basketball player and co-founding a multimillion-dollar investment firm was not enough, Hummer also became a certified Twin Commander pilot in the “third act” of his life. Hummer admits he was always drawn to the sky. In 2009, he began flying a Cessna 206 Piston plane.

Hummer often traveled from the Bay Area to his vacation home in Idaho. However, due to his height and stature, he needed something large and faster. This was when he fell in love with the Twin Commander.

Interestingly, becoming both a professional pilot and a pro athlete is not as uncommon as many think. In fact, many athletes prefer flying themselves. Being able to fly allows athletes to make large commutes in reasonable amounts of time. Although athletes tend to be risk-takers, piloting is pretty safe, especially if the person is serious about following the rules.

Now retired, Hummer spends most of his time flying his Twin Commander. There is no doubt he’s lived a fulfilling, successful, and rather intriguing life. Although not remembered as an NBA superstar, Hummer is a classic example that pro athletes can go to have incredibly successful careers.