Brian Cardinal Bio: Stats, Contract, Wife & Net Worth

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Many young athletes want to copy their idols and forget who they really are. But Brian Cardinal just appreciated himself and succeeded in his career.

Although he wasn’t a talented player, Cardinal always did extra things, taking charges and diving for a ball. So, he was named “the custodian” for his notorious playing style.

Brian Cardinal is a former professional basketball player. Over his 12 years of NBA career, he had played for 6 professional basketball teams. 

Brian Cardinal
Brian Cardinal

Since retiring from NBA, Cardinal is still contributing to basketball by mentoring future generations.

To find more about Cardinal and his life stays with us till the end. But at first, let’s look at some quick facts.

Quick Facts:

Name  Brian Lee Cardinal
Date of Birth May 2, 1977
Birth Place Tolono, Illinois
Nick Name The custodian
Age 45 years old
Gender Male
Religion Unknown
Nationality American
Ethnicity White
Horoscope Taurus
Body Measurement Unknown
Height 6’8″ (2.03 m)
Weight 111 kgs (245 lb)
Build Muscular
Wingspan Unknown
Eye Colour Black
Father Name Rod Cardinal
Mother Name Mary Cardinal
Siblings Troy Cardinal, Lisa Cardinal
Relationship Married
Wife Danielle Bird
Children Bryson Cardinal (son), Emery Cardinal, and Delanie Cardinal (daughter)
Profession Former Basketball Player  
Education Unity High School (High School) and Purdue University (College)
Position Power forward/ Small Forward
Draft 2000 / 44th Overall pick/ Detroit Pistons
NBA Debut 2000
Jersey Number #35 (Dallas Mavericks, Memphis Grizzlies,  Golden State Warriors)

#14 (Minnesota Timberwolves) 

Net Worth $15 million
Teams Detroit Pistons, Washington Wizards, Pamesa Valencia, Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves, Dallas Mavericks
Playing Career 2000-2012
Social Media Twitter, Facebook, Instagram
Merch  Basketball Trading Card, Autographed Warriors Card, Basketball Card
Last Update March, 2023

Brian Cardinal | Early Life, Family and Education

Brain Cardinal was born on May 2, 1977, in Tolono, Illinois. He was born to parents Rod Cardinal (father) and Mary Cardinal (mother).

His father Rod was a head basketball trainer at Illinois between 1973 to 2003. 

Along with his parents, Brian grew up with his two siblings Troy Cardinal and Lisa Cardinal.

Growing up, Cardinal was a fan of the Chicago Bulls. He has been good at public speaking since his childhood.  


Cardinal notorious playing style earned him the nickname “the Custodian.” He got his nickname from Piston teammates. 

In college, he was nicknamed “The Janitor.” Because of the way Cardinal cleaned the floor while diving for loose balls.

During his college years, he also received “Mr. Hustle” and “Courage Award” for 4 consecutive years.

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How tall is Brian Cardinal? Body Measurement and Playing Style

Brian Cardinal is 45 years old as of 2023.

He stands 6 feet 8 inches (2.03 m) and weighs 111 kgs (245 lb). After calculating his height and a weight value, Cardinal’s BMI comes out at 26.9. 

Cardinal was not an athletic guy, but his effort and intelligence were of different levels. He was intelligent in pick-rolls, transitions, and offensive rebounds.

Similarly, the most substantial part of his offense was perimeter shooting. He was the spot-up shooter who could make 3 points when necessary.

Moreover, Cardinal was well-known for all-out hustling, picking fouls, and rebounding. He was the definition of a complete, true professional player.

Brian Cardinal | High School and College Career

In high school, Cardinal played for Unity High School alongside brother Troy.

During his senior year, he also played in the Class A Illinois Basketball Coaches Association All-Star game. Later, he was adjudged as the most valuable player.

Similarly, in the Coca-Cola High School All-Star Game, he scored the highest point, recording 24 points and 13 rebounds representing West. 

During his Cardinal high school career, Brian finished with an 86-25 record. Likewise, he was also named in the Top 100 USA high school seniors.

College Stats (Purdue)

Cardinal later attended Purdue University after completing high school. Although he was redshirted in his first season, he regularly practiced with the team. 

During his 1996-97 freshman year, Cardinal started all 30 games for Boilermakers. Cardinal registered his first college double-double against Western Michigan, posting 13 points and 12 rebounds.

In that season, Brian was the team’s third-leading scorer with  10.6 PPG. Likewise, he also grabbed the team’s second-highest 182 rebounds. 

Team Captain and Reputed

During his 1998-99 junior campaign, Cardinal was named Purdue team captain. Cardinal averaged 11.4 points and also became Boilmakers all-time steals leader with 259 steals.

On January 23 1999, Cardinal scored a career-best 33 points against Michigan. He was later named All-Big Ten Third Team for the second consecutive season.  

Cardinal was again named as the team captain. Later, he finished his final year with 13.9 PPG and season-high 203 rebounds.

During his senior year, he also earned All-Big Ten Second Team honor. Later, he again led Purdue to the NCCA tournament.

He made a perfect 4 tournament appearance in his four years. But during his final year, Boilermakers made a deep run into Elite 8. 

Brian supporting Purdue Athletics
Brian supporting Purdue Athletics

To date, Brian Cardinal’s 1,584 points rank him 18th all-time scoring for Purdue.

Likewise, his 269 steals is second on all-time. It was broken by Chris Kramer’s (2006-2010) with 260 steals.

Similarly, Brian is also second in starts for Purdue with 125, behind E’ Twaun Morre with 136 starts. 

All in all with his career at Purdue University, Brian developed a reputation for his hard-nosed play and work ethic. However, that was not an intentional act. 

Brian also added, ” I was proud to be here and put on that Purdue uniform.” This reputation of his dropped him into the Purdue Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame throughout a 12-year NBA career.

Brian stands as one of the all-time leaders in games, starts, steals, and rebounds at Purdue.

After his sophomore season, Brian was called up to represent Team USA in the 1998 Goodwill games. Later the USA won the gold in the tournament.

Brian Cardinal | Professional Career

In the 2000 NBA draft, Brian Cardinal was selected as 44th overall pick by Detroit Pistons. He made his NBA debut in a 114-83 loss against Portland Trail Blazers. He scored 3 points and grabbed 4 rebounds in his debut.

Furthermore, Cardinal only played 15 games in his first season. Likewise, he averaged 2.1 points and 1.5 rebounds.

Later, Cardinal was traded to Washington Wizards on September 11, 2002. But only after playing five matches was he waived.

However, he played for Parmesan Valencia for the rest of the season. Cardinal also won ULEB Cup there.

Break-through Campaign

After returning to the USA, Cardinal signed with Golden State Warriors. It was the best season for Brian, playing in 76 games averaging 9.6 points and 4 rebounds.

Cardinal also became NBA Most Improved Player Award finalist. On February 11, 2004, Cardinal scored career-high 32 points in a 110-99 win over Phoenix Suns.

Later on February 28, he recorded career-high 14 rebounds in an 87-81 loss against the Bulls. Further, Cardinal signed with Memphis Grizzlies in free agency.

Brian Cardinal driving past Udonis
Brian Cardinal driving past Udonis

During the 2004-05 season, he started in career-best 16 games. Likewise, in the same season, Cardinal recorded a career-best 2.0 assists and 1.5 steals.

Furthermore, in his four years in Memphis, Cardinal averaged 6 points and 2.5 rebounds. Cardinal was later traded to Minnesota Timberwolves in 2008.

However, in the next season, he only played in 27 games averaging a team-low 9 MPG. Later, he was traded to New York Knicks on February 17, 2010.

But within 2 days, he was waived again. Despite that, he re-signed with Wolves on March 23.

NBA Champion

Cardinal signed with Dallas Mavericks on September 27, 2010. At Dallas, he got to team up with Dirk Nowitzki, who was also chasing his first ring.

Later, Cardinal won his first and only NBA championship beating the Lebron-led Heat 4-2.

Brian Cardinal with his teammates
Brian Cardinal with his teammates.

During the playoffs, he played in 9 matches averaging 1.1 PPG. Likewise, in the regular season, he played 56 matches averaging 2.6 points and 1.1 rebounds.

On December 12, 2011, Cardinal signed a veteran minimum deal with Dallas. Later, he retired during the end of the 2012 NBA season.

Final Stats

Points 2,108 (4.6 ppg)
Rebounds 1,050 (2.3 rpg)
Assists 465 (1.0 APG)

Brian Cardinal | Post Career

Firstly, Brian Cardinal joined Purdue athletic department as an intern in 2011. But he later walked out for playing in the 2011-12 season. 

However, in 2013 after retirement, Cardinal again joined Purdue. This time as Assistant Director of John Purdue Club.

Cardinal, his wife, and NFL quarterback Drew Brees got involved in donations to Purdue athletics. They started initiating fundraising, awareness, and motivation campaign.

Even after retiring, Cardinal is still contributing to the NBA. He frequently works with NBA Academy, mentoring future players.

Brian Cardinal | Salary, Net worth & Career Earnings

“Brian Cardinal earned $39,334,595 from his NBA CARRER contract.”

The data mentioned above regarding his career earnings are extracted from

The Pistons drafted Brian in the 2000 NBA draft, Cardinal signed1 year rookie contract worth $3,16,969. Later, he extended his contract for 2 years worth $1,053,285.

Likewise, he signed a 1-year $6,63,679 deal with Golden States Warriors after being a free agent.

After a great season with the Warriors, Cardinal signed 6 years, $37 million deal with the Grizzlies.

Although he planned to retire after the 2009-10 season, he was offered a Dallas contract. Later, he signed a 1-year deal worth $1,352,181. 

The estimated net worth of Brian Cardinal is $15 million. But his exact net worth is not revealed to date.

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Brian Cardinal | Personal Life and Wife

Brian Cardinal is happily married to his beautiful wife Danielle Bird. Talking about Danielle, she is a collegiate player for Purdue.

Notably, she has also won the 1999 National Women’s Championship. They have 3 children together.

They have a son Bryson who is also the oldest. Likewise, their daughters’ names are Emery and Delanie

Purdue even named  Mackay Arena Complex basketball practice court is named after Cardinal and Bird to honor them.  

Social Media Presence:

Although he has social media handles, he is pretty inactive. Cardinal doesn’t post or tweet on his social media.

Moreover, he is a follower who likes to follow others on these platforms. His quote that is a little popular is, “But it kept getting really really sore, every single day.”

Some FAQs:

Where is Brian Cardinal now?

Currently, Cardinal is the assistant director of John Purdue Club. Similarly, he also works for the NBA academy. He was also involved in charity works after his retirement. 

How much is Brian Cardinal’s career earning?

Over his 12 years of basketball career, Cardinal made $39,334,595 from playing in the NBA.

Moreover, Brian signed the highest-earning contract with Memphis Grizzlies in 2004, worth $37 million over 6 years. Currently, Cardinal estimated net worth is around $15 million. 

Where did Brian Cardinal attend college?

Cardinal Brian attended Purdue University. Furthermore, over his 4 years, he recorded 1,584 points and 259 steals in 125 starts.

Likewise, he captained the team since junior year. During his senior year, he led Purdue to elite 8.

Similarly, to honor Brian and his wife, Mackay Arena Complex basketball practice court is named after them.  

How much is Brian Cardinal NBA contract with the Golden State Warriors worth?

Brian Cardinal signed a 1-year contract with the Golden State Warriors worth $664k in 2003.

When did Brian Cardinal retire?

Brian Cardinal retired from his basketball career at the end of the 2012 season.

When did Brian Cardinal play at Purdue?

Brian Cardinal played at Purdue University from (1996-2000).

When did Brian Cardinal win the NBA championship?

Cardinal won his only and first championship ring with Dallas in 2011. He played five games in the finals out of six.

What position did Brian Cardinal play in NBA?

Brian cardinal played in power forward and small forward position in his professional basketball career.

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