|Jimmie Guymon was a basketball player at Valley High School and at Eastern New Mexico University and later professionally in United Kingdom. The first time Jimmie Guymon touched a basketball was when he was just four years of age. What transpired from there was a story that led him to being one of the first United State imports to play pro basketball in the United Kingdom. At Valley High School, Jim was part of the school’s first State Championship in 1965. He was one of the leading scorers and rebounders in New Mexico in his senior year. His nickname “Golden Arm” was given to him because of his extremely fine outside touch in shooting the basketball. When people talk about the greatest basketball player in Albuquerque history… the name of Jim “Golden Arm” Guymon always comes up!|
The 6’2″ guard took success with him wherever he went, it seemed, going on to Eastern New Mexico University where he won an NAIA National Championship as a sophomore. He was a NAIA All-American for the Greyhounds. His winning track record didn’t go unnoticed as he was drafted in the fifth round of the NBA draft by the Cincinnati Royals (now the Sacramento Kings), and the ninth round by the Dallas Chaparrals in the old ABA draft. Luck was not on Guymon’s side early in his pro career, as he was struck down with infectious hepatitis. It took him over a year to recover from that fully. After that he tried out with the Phoenix Suns but he got cut. Thus, Guymon made the decision to head to London, England to play for Crystal Palace, where he went on to average 28 points and 8 rebounds per game. After securing a starting spot with the London team he won three championships and led the team to the quarter finals of the European Cup Winners’ Cup; still the only English team to do so. He is considered to be the best American to play. Guymon’s playing career finished with Solent Stars, but before deciding to focus on one on one teaching of the game, he tried his hand at coaching.
He also coached basketball in United Kingdom and has culminated in him being recognized as one of the top player development club coaches. Guymon is perhaps most well-known for his work with a skinny 17 year old big kid named Joel Freeland, who grew to be one of the premier big men in Europe and is now suiting up in a Portland Trailblazers jersey and Will Neighbour, who’s based in Arkansas with UALR and is tipped to have a bright professional career ahead of him. Both Freeland and Neighbour attribute a lot of their success to Guymon.
In 1971 was named the Greatest Greyhound, which is the year’s top athlete at Eastern New Mexico. Jim was inducted into the Eastern New Mexico Hall of Honor in 1999.