There have been many players who have had successful careers in sports, with brothers who have never even played the same sport. However, it becomes interesting and gets competitive when families have more than one child play the same sport. As much as any parent wants both kids to bask in the glory of success, there are far too many instances where one brother succeeds and the other, quite frankly, sucks.
The Harbaugh brothers have been around football for most of their lives, but only Jim had what it took to make it in the NFL. They have both been successful enough in the NFL coaching ranks to make their family proud, but other families are not so lucky. Michael and Marcus Vick have probably made their family sick with their bad behavior off the field, but at least Michael has been able to give glimpses of his enormous potential in the NFL. Jose Canseco popularized the 40-40 club, but brother Ozzie Canseco never came close to 40 steals or even 40 hits in his MLB career. In the racing world, Dale and Dale Jr. are legends in the Earnhardt family Hall of Fame, but Kerry has been left on the outside looking in. Seth and Steph Curry might have similar sounding names, but one is a world champion in the NBA and the other is relegated to being a champion in the D-League. Throughout the sports world, there are several other examples where the genes for sports have not exactly been shared.
The following 15 brothers have not had the same amount of success playing the same sport. One brother has been highly successful, while the other brother has struggled to make an impact in their particular sport. In some cases, the older brother has set the bar high, while in other cases it is the younger brother who ends up making the family proud. Most families just feel fortunate when one brother becomes a star, but that doesn't do much to help the other brother's case.
15 Jim and John Harbaugh
14 Diego and Hugo Maradona - Soccer
Diego Maradona might be known as much for his "hand of God" goal against England in the 1986 World Cup than the stellar career that he actually had. Diego scored an astounding 312 goals in 588 professional games, adding 34 goals in 91 games for Argentina in international play. The list of honors for Diego is quite long and he even set records for the largest transfer fees in professional soccer at the time when he started playing for Barcelona and later when he transferred to Napoli. He was a superb dribbler, passer and controller of play.
13 Andy and Jamie Murray - Tennis
Andy Murray is probably the best tennis player to ever come out of Great Britain. He has won over $37 million in prize money after starting his career in 2005. He has won two Grand Slam events, and has been to the finals of the Australian Open four times. He also won the Gold Medal at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Andy has been one of the most consistent players in professional tennis, making it to the semi-finals of every Grand Slam event.
12 Cal and Billy Ripken - Baseball
Although Billy Ripken enjoyed some modest success in the major leagues, he couldn't exactly compete with Cal's iron man streak. Cal Ripken Jr. cranked out 3,184 hits, with 431 home runs, 1,695 RBIs, 1,647 runs, and 603 doubles in his 21 years in MLB. His numbers were extraordinary, considering he played shortstop and managed to, at one time, play in 2,632 consecutive games. He was a 19 time All-Star and two time AL MVP.
11 Matt and Tim Hasselbeck - Football
Matt Hasselbeck has had quite a surprisingly long career. He has managed to play in the NFL for 16 seasons, with most of his production coming from his years in Seattle earlier in his career. He has passed for 34,949 yards with 203 touchdown passes in his career. Matt has been to three Pro Bowls and was an NFC Champion with Seattle in 2005. He has been productive enough to maintain a career quarterback rating over 80, currently standing at 82.3.
10 Tony and Chris Gwynn - Baseball
It is quite amusing how the pudgy and more overweight brother ended up being such a good player, going on to earn a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Tony Gwynn was an amazing hitter who could also play quite admirably in the field. He finished his career with a .338 batting average, 3,141 hits, and 1,138 RBIs. Tony made 15 All-Star teams, won the Silver Slugger award seven times, and received five Gold Gloves in his illustrious career.
9 Ronaldinho and Roberto de Assis Moreira - Soccer
8 Klay and Mychel Thompson - Basketball
Klay Thompson came into his own this past season as he proved to the league that he could be more than just a spot up shooter. Klay received his first invitation to the All-Star game by averaging 21.7 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 1.1 steals per game. In just four NBA seasons, Klay is averaging 17.5 points per game, while shooting 41.8% from beyond the 3-point arc. He has become a star player in the NBA and now has a championship to show for it.
7 Michael and Jeff Andretti - Auto Racing
6 Michael and Marcus Vick - Football
These two brothers deserve a prominent spot on this list due in large part to the talent they both possess along with their ability to squander it as well. Michael Vick was supposed to be the second coming of a morph between Steve Young and John Elway, with his ability to run like Bo Jackson, and throw like Nolan Ryan. In Michael's second NFL season (2002), the world caught a glimpse of his capabilities. He passed for 2,936 yards and ran for 777 yards, while scoring a total of 24 touchdowns. He also rushed for 1,039 yards, while throwing 20 touchdown passes in 2006, but his work has been inconsistent to say the least.
5 Larry and Eddie Bird - Basketball
It is almost unfair to compare any one human being to Larry Bird, and expecting a brother to be of the same caliber is almost a one in a million chance. Larry Bird was a legend, averaging 24.3 points, 10 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game. The three-time NBA MVP also was selected to 12 All-Star teams on his way to winning 3 NBA championships with the Boston Celtics. He was a mythical human being who took the lowly Indiana State Sycamores to the NCAA tournament for the very first time, and even to a dream match up with Magic Johnson and Michigan State in the title game.
4 Wayne and John Rooney - Soccer
3 Dale and Kerry Earnhardt - Auto Racing
2 Stephen and Seth Curry - Basketball
Although it is early in both of their careers, Stephen Curry's MVP season now sets them pretty far apart on the brother comparison scale. In six seasons of play, Steph Curry has averaged 20.9 points, 6.9 assists, and 1.7 steals per game, while also being selected to play in the All-Star game two times, and most recently being recognized as the league's MVP.
1 Jose and Ozzie Canseco - Baseball
The Canseco brothers were identical twins, but only one of them ended up being a star in the major leagues. Jose Canseco was the AL Rookie of The Year in 1986 and just two years later was honored with the AL MVP award. He finished his career with 462 home runs, 1,407 RBI, and 200 stolen bases, while also brandishing a .515 slugging percentage and .266 batting average as well. He set the bar high, and all his brother could do is look up.
Ozzie Canseco played in just 24 major league games, never experiencing the thrill of hitting a major league home run. He had only 13 hits and 4 RBIs in the three seasons he had the opportunity to play in the major leagues. Even his .200 batting average and .292 slugging percentage paled in comparison to what his brother was able to do.
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