Kobe Bryant, Stephen Curry and the 20 Best NBA Progenies

Ross LipschultzAnalyst IMarch 1, 2011

Kobe Bryant, Stephen Curry and the 20 Best NBA Progenies

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    Most boys grow up idolizing their dads. They want to be just like pops, and will copy him no matter what he does.

    So when dad wants to go outside and shoot hoops, guess who's coming along? Baby Kobe or Baby Stephen.

    Bryant and Curry both come from basketball families, as both dads had successful careers in the NBA. While some dads are fortunate enough to always be better than their kids at sports, Joe Bryant and Dell Curry just don't have that luxury.

    Nor do they probably want it, with all the money their kids rake in.

    These two superstars are not the first of father-son combinations to play in the NBA. Long is the history of progenies in professional basketball, so maybe Bryant and Curry aren't even the most deep family in the league's history.

    But if not them, then who?

Honorable Mention: Patrick Jr. and Patrick Ewing

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    If Junior had actually played in a regular season game, this progeny would be much higher on the list. 

    Daddy is clearly one of the best big men to grace the NBA, but Junior is a long way away from making a career anywhere near his. But hey, Senior left big shoes to fill.

20. Coby and George Karl

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    Neither Coby nor George had a lengthy playing career, but considering they've both fought through cancer to do what they love, their level of passion is rivaled by few.

    Nice to see willpower is passed down from generation to generation.

19. Sean and Scott May

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    Sean's got a long way to go to match up to Scott, which is saying a lot considering Scott only played seven years.

    Both were first-round picks, with Scott going second and Sean going 13th.

18. Matt Jr. and Matt Guokas

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    The Guokases (or Guoki) were the first father-son combo to each win NBA championships. And that's about the only notable stat about them.

    Senior was unfortunate enough to lose his leg in a car accident, so Junior carried the family torch to a 10-year playing career, two stints as an NBA head coach and a successful career in broadcast.

17. Ronnie and Ronald Brewer

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    Despite dad being drafted ahead of his son, Ronnie seems like he will easily outlast Ronald in the NBA. Both were standouts at the University of Arkansas and know how to score. Period.

    Although, only Ronnie has the ridiculous shooting style. Apparently, it's due to a water slide accident, which begs the question: Where was dad?

16. Gerald Jr. and Gerald Henderson

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    Senior had a lengthy NBA career, but nothing will parallel his monumental (and heartbreaking) steal against James Worthy in the 1984 NBA Finals that tied Game 2.

    Younger Gerald has a long way to go to meet Pops' bar. As the 12th pick in the 2009 draft, Charlotte probably hoped he'd be dropping more then 5.5 points per night, but that's how it goes for MJ's squad.

15. Damien and Gerald Wilkins

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    Gerald was a key contributor to the Knicks in the late '80s, and even competed against legendary brother 'Nique in a few Slam Dunk Contests. His skills eventually faded due to injury, but he still played 14 years.

    His son, Damien, can't say nearly as much. He's had some flashes of talent, but has been a reserve throughout most of his career.

14. Mike Jr. and Mike Dunleavy

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    Senior was a sixth-round draft pick, so Junior will probably feel good that he was more valuable than his pop as the third pick overall. If only slightly.

    Hey, at least Junior is still in the league, while Senior has to wonder what life would be like without the Clipper Curse.

13. LeRoy and LeRon Ellis

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    LeRoy (pictured) played in the NBA for 14 seasons, scoring 10,176 points and 8,709 rebounds. He probably named his son LeRon so he wouldn't seem egotistical, but keep his legend alive.

    But capitalizing a middle letter doesn't guarantee success. LeRon played briefly in the NBA, averaging a career-best 4.4 points in 1994, leading him to a professional hoops career overseas.

12. John II and John Lucas III

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    Stability does not run in this family. While JL2 managed 14 years in the NBA, JL3 has played for eight teams, both overseas and in the NBA/NBDL, in six years.

    Fortunately, JL2 taught his son not to fall victim to drug abuse like he did. That's good parenting right there.

11. Mike and Henry Bibby

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    It's nice to know that Mike didn't become as big of a traitor as his father, who decided to coach USC after playing at UCLA. Once a Bruin, always a Bruin, Henry.

    Regardless, both Bibbys contributed to contenders throughout their lengthy careers and got traded about as often as Quentin Richardson. Must be likable fellas.

10. Jalen Rose and Jimmy Walker

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    It's truly sad that these two never actually met in person, but it's understandable since Walker took no part in raising Rose. However, his genes certainly had some play in Rose's future.

    Walker was a two-time All-Star in his nine NBA seasons, and Rose had a laudable college and pro career, and is now a quality analyst on ESPN. Daddy would be proud.

9. Danny and Ed Manning

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    Papa Ed had a mediocre career in the NBA, but is probably best known for his son and former No. 1 overall pick Danny.

    Unfortunately, that means he's known for the Clipper Curse as well. Manning was supposed to revive L.A.'s other team, but lingering knee problems hampered his career after his two All-Star appearances.

8. Kiki and Ernie Vandeweghe

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    Two-time NBA All-Star and fellow Palisades High School alum Kiki had such a prolific career that he got the jab step to be renamed the "Kiki Move," simply because that was his go-to maneuver.

    His dad must be proud. Sure, Ernie made the NBA, but he didn't make the playoffs 12 out of 13 seasons or get fired by future Bond villain Mikhail Prokhorov.

7. Kevin and Stan Love

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    Dad may have only played four years in the pros, but he obviously taught his boy well enough to make the All-Star team in his third year and lead the league in rebounding.

    Stan and Kevin were both top-10 picks and connoisseurs of facial hair. Clearly, bad decisions on grooming run in the family.

6. Danny and Bob Ferry

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    Oddly enough, both Ferrys were the second players picked in their respective drafts and both became executives in the NBA.

    Sadly, while Bob won executive of the year twice, Danny essentially cost Cleveland its economy by not surrounding LeBron James with talent. Dad 1, Son 0.

5. Stephen and Dell Curry

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    Clearly, shooting stroke is genetic. I don't know what chromosome it comes on, but the Currys are clearly dominant for the trait.

    Eventually brother, Seth Curry, will join the bunch and make Dell even more proud. Until then, he will have to live with his nearly All-Star son averaging 18 points and six assists each night. How rough.

4. Luke and Bill Walton

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    The Waltons are the greatest father-son combination for NBA championships with five (not including Kobe Bryant on his own). While it's impossible for Luke to join Papa Bill in the Hall of Fame, the family could change their last name to "Fundamental" and no one would mind.

    Or "large nose." Either one.

3. Danny and Adolph Schayes

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    Dolph played in 12 All-Star Games, led the league in rebounding, won an NBA title, was named to the 50 Greatest Players of All Time in 1996 and made the International Jewish Hall of Fame.

    Therefore, Danny could never live up to his dad's career, even after playing 18 seasons. But at least they repped for Jews. Major props.

2. Kobe and Joe "Jelly Bean" Bryant

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    Despite being a nine-year veteran in the NBA, Jelly Bean might be the only dad to lose to his kid at hoops before potty training.

    The Bryants may be the kings of dedication. Kobe led his teams to championships with mangled appendages, and Joe played professionally well into his 50s. Like father, like son, I suppose.

1. Jon, Brent, Drew, Scooter and Rick Barry

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    Rick Barry, you are a machine. Even more than Sasha Vujacic. The Barrys win by sheer numbers.

    I imagine when he took his kids to the recreation league, he just suited up and beat everyone. Hell, family reunions are probably more competitive than the WNBA.