Being in a talented professional basketball family must come with its perks, but we have seen a son or a brother of a great NBA player fail, as they were not able to carve out the same career as the person in their family was able too. This must be a hard pill to swallow for these guys, as living in the shadow of a loved one must be really difficult to go through. Also, a lot of these players who live in the shadow of their dad or brother must feel bad about it, as while making the league is hard in itself, considering they were born into a basketball family, they expect to succeed as much as their dad or brother.
In this article, we will be looking at 20 NBA players, 10 of whom lived in their father's shadow and 10 of them lived in their brother's shadow. We will be looking at pairs of players, either a father/son combo or two brothers, one of whom who had a successful legacy in the NBA, and the other who was not able to live up to their family member in the same sport. It's hard to blame these guys, as it's a very difficult thing to undertake; try to make a name for yourself when your family has built a legacy.
As always, feel free to leave any comments you have on this matter in the comment section below, as we would love to hear your thoughts about this article.
Here are 10 NBA players who lived in their father's shadow and 10 who lived in their brother's.
20 Father's: Luke Walton (Bill Walton)
Bill Walton was one of the best big men in the league back in the '70s. Even with injury problems cutting his career short, Bill was able to carve out a excellent career during his time on the court. Luke Walton, on the other hand, was not able to have nearly the same success as his father.
Luke was a great player in college, but found it difficult to succeed in the league as he was being based on his college stats and the fact his father is a NBA legend.
Walton is now the head coach of the talented Los Angeles Lakers, as he now has a chance to make a name for himself in the coaching world.
19 Brother's: Zoran Dragic (Goran Dragic)
Zoran Dragic played overseas until he was 27 before he tried his luck in the NBA. He found his way onto the Phoenix Suns to join his brother, Goran Dragic. Zoran was probably given a chance on the team because his brother was making serious noise for the team, as he averaged over 20 points per game for them the year before his brother joined. The two were then traded, however, to the Miami Heat, where Zoran didn't last long and Goran became a star player for the team. This is a classic case of one sibling being more talented than the other for this piece of the list.
18 Father's: Drew Barry (Rick Barry)
The Barry family is one of the best basketball bloodlines to ever play in the NBA, as the father, Rick, had an excellent NBA career as he was the youngest player to score 57 points in a game at only 21 years of age. He had three sons who would all play in the league to further the Barry name. Jon and Brent Barry went on to have successful NBA careers, with Brent becoming a league champion and even taking home a slam dunk contest win during All-Star Weekend.
The second youngest son, Drew, was never able to make a name for himself in the league, as he only was able to average a bit over 2 points per game in 60 games played.
Additionally, Rick Barry's oldest son Scooter and youngest son Canyon played Division I college ball but failed to make it to the NBA.
17 Brother's: Brent Price (Mark Price)
Mark Price is an NBA name you should recognize, but Brent Price certainly isn't. The two are brothers, but one was able to have an incredible NBA career where the other just simply lived in his brother's shadow.
Mark Price is one of the greatest Cleveland Cavaliers of all-time and would be the best if it wasn't for LeBron James.
He was a dominant scorer and made his way onto multiple All-Star teams and first All-NBA teams. His brother Brent did not make his way onto any accomplishment lists, as he played for four separate teams while averaging around 5 points per game.
16 Father's: Austin Rivers (Doc Rivers)
Doc Rivers was a reliable player during his time in the NBA, as he spent 14 years in the league as a player with a few different teams. He then became a coach in the league and was the head coach for the great Boston Celtics teams of the late 2000s, even winning the championship in 2008 with him at the head coach position.
His son, Austin Rivers, was actually projected to be a better player than his father, as he was one of the best players in high school, but his NBA career hasn't gone as scouts expected to this point, as he hasn't been able to break out of dad's shadow.
15 Brother's: Mychel Thompson (Klay Thompson)
Mychel Thompson is not a name many NBA fans know, but he actually is the brother of All-Star player Klay Thompson. The two are certainly different players with different careers, Mychel being a bigger player with a much worse shot and Klay Thompson being a dead-eye shooter with championship titles to his name. Mychel has tried his luck on a few different teams in the league, but it looks as though he will not be able to find a foothold with a team and become an actual rotation player. Klay, on the other hand, is doing special things in Golden State.
14 Father's: Larry Nance Jr. (Larry Nance Sr.)
Larry Nance Jr. is currently a power forward for the Cleveland Cavaliers and is still trying to find his way in this league despite showing a lot of good athleticism, as he has thrown down some wild dunks.
Larry Nance Sr. was also an excellent dunker back in the day, but his dunk abilities were not his lone talent, as he was able to put up great stats during the time he was on the court.
Larry Nance Jr. still has a way to go before he retires, it looks like, so he still has time to break out of his dad's shadow.
13 Brother's: Harvey Grant (Horace Grant)
Horace Grant and Harvey Grant were twins who both played in the NBA at the same time as each other. One of the brothers turned out to be a great player and the other just simply did not, the good player being Horace and the "other brother" being Harvey. Horace Grant was a key player in two championship runs with the Chicago Bulls, and was even a member of the championship-winning 2001 Los Angeles Lakers.
Harvey was already out of the league at that time, and while he did stay around in the league for a good amount of time, he was always thought of as Horace's twin brother.
12 Father's: Patrick Ewing Jr. (Patrick Ewing)
Patrick Ewing was one of the most dominant big men in the league in the '90s, and ultimately became one of the best scorers of all-time and possibly the greatest New York Knick ever. He had a son whom he promptly named Patrick Ewing Jr., and his son was talented enough to go to the NBA and ever lucky enough to wear the same jersey that his dad made so proud.
The problem was Patrick Ewing Jr. was not the same player his dad was at all, which is why he quickly faded from the league and will be thought of as Patrick Ewing's son rather than his own man.
11 Brother's: Gerald Wilkins (Dominique Wilkins)
Dominique Wilkins was a pioneer of the game of basketball, as he was one of the first real high-flying players that came into the NBA, which is something that is much more common now than it was back then. With this and his awesome basketball talent, Dominique quickly became a household name for basketball watching families around the country.
Not many people knew, that his brother Gerald Wilkins had a stint in the league at the same time as he did.
Gerald was never able to have nearly the same impact as his brother, which is why not many people know who he is.
10 Father's: Glenn Robinson III (Glenn Robinson Jr.)
Glenn Robinson III made noise in the dunk contest a few seasons ago with his awesome showing in 2017. Other than that, however, Glenn Robinson III hasn't had the same career as his dad, Glenn Robinson, had while in the league. His father was a great scorer and all-around player, and while Robinson III is still young, it doesn't look as though he has nearly the same amount of talent his dad did. Robinson III is now on the Detroit Pistons and not the Pacers anymore, so maybe this year could be his time to shine.
9 Brother's: Marquis Teague (Jeff Teague)
Marquis and Jeff Teague both share the same last name and family, however, Jeff Teague was blessed with more basketball talent than his brother Marquis, and you can tell this is true by the way both of their career's have gone to this point. Jeff Teague is an All-Star caliber point-guard in the NBA, while his brother Marquis is a bench player who is constantly trying to find the right place to play for.
You have to respect Marquis for this, as he is hungry to leave his brother's shadow and is looking to make an impact, but for now, he is stuck on this list.
8 Father's: Glen Rice Jr. (Glen Rice Sr.)
The two share the same name, however, they definitely do not share the same talent on the basketball court, as Glen Rice Sr. was a much better player than his son when it comes to NBA success.
One of the greatest shooters ever, Glen Rice Sr. went on to win multiple awards throughout his career, such as being a three-point champion, All-Star Game MVP, and even an NBA championship.
Glen Rice Jr. had a lot of eyes on him coming into the league, but since being drafted by the Sixers years ago, the expectations have faded as it has become clear Rice Jr. will not break out of his dad's shadow.
7 Brother's: Derrick Gervin (George Gervin)
George Gervin was one of the best basketball players of his time, as he had a certain finesse on the court that not many players had back then, but something that is coming much more common in the game today. Easily one of the greatest San Antonio Spurs, George "The Iceman" Gervin is going to be remembered in this league for a long time. His brother, Derrick Gervin, will not be remembered unless we are talking about siblings of great players, as he never was able to make an impact in the league. He went to the same college as his brother, but that is where the similarity ends between the two.
6 Father's: Tim Hardaway Jr. (Tim Hardaway Sr.)
Tim Hardaway was one of the best basketball players of his time and help mold a lot of the future stars of the league as his crossover was one of the most copied moves once he made it popular, and his flash led him to having a successful career in the NBA. His son, Tim Hardaway Jr., has had eyes on him since coming into the league.
He struggled for the Hawks but was able to get a big contract from the struggling Knicks.
While a skilled starter, Hardaway Jr. will never put up numbers like his father did, and he will end up remaining in his dad's shadow.
5 Brother's: Seth Curry (Steph Curry)
Dell Curry was one of the best shooters in the league back in his playing days, and he ended up having two sons, both of whom would go onto play in the NBA just like he did. One of his sons turned out to be arguably the best shooter of all-time in Stephen Curry, as Stephen was easily able to step out of his father's shadow and become a superstar.
Seth Curry lives in both his brother and his father's shadows, but considering Stephen plays in the league with him together and is the best player of the family, Seth is here on the brother's end of the list.
4 Father's: Gary Payton II (Gary Payton Sr.)
Gary Payton was one of the fiercest point guards we have ever seen step onto an NBA court. Ever night, Payton went out there and gave it his all, and never backed down from anyone as he had a lot of big moments involving his trash talking to stars around the league. A lock-down defender, Gary Payton was a star player.
His son, Gary Payton II, is anything but a star player in this league, as he is more worried about finding a team to keep him around rather than putting up big numbers. His dad was just a much better player than he was, and it looks as though he will stay in his father's shadow.
3 Brother's: Taylor Griffin (Blake Griffin)
Blake Griffin was a premier player a few years ago for the Los Angeles being a major part of the "Lob City" era for the Clippers, and while he hasn't stepped his game up much since then, Blake is still a star in this league.
His brother, Taylor Griffin, was not gifted nearly as much as his brother Blake when it comes to basketball talent, as you can tell one of them was made to succeed and the other wasn't.
Taylor tried his luck in the league on a few different teams but was never able to find his foothold in the NBA.
2 Father's: Larry Drew II (Larry Drew)
Larry Drew is one of the most underrated NBA players of his era, as he had a successful and long playing career, even averaging over 20 points per game in his prime season. He is now an NBA coach, which means he was one of the players that guys respected on the court and would work well for being a coach in this league. Larry Drew II has not had nearly the same success as his father had in the league, and while the NBA has gotten more talented, it looks as though Larry Drew II will never break out of his dad's shadow.
1 Brother's: Albert King (Bernard King)
Bernard King is easily one of the most dominant scorers in all of the league's long history and is considered one of, if not the greatest New York Knicks of all-time, which is really saying something considering the team is one of the biggest franchises of all-time in the sports world. Albert King was his brother, and he was even drafted 10th overall back in the 1981 NBA Draft to the New Jersey Nets. It turned out to be a bad pick for the team. While he has basketball royalty in his blood, it didn't show up on the court at all as his career fizzled out quickly.