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All in the family: Brothers who play in the NBA

We go down the internet rabbit hole to learn about Blazers and other players with brothers in the NBA.

Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

One story that has surfaced in the run up to the 2015 draft is that the Blazers are taking a look at Delon Wright, younger brother of forward Dorell Wright. It got me wondering how many players have siblings in the league? The internet never disappoints and I found this awesome list of brothers who have played in the NBA.

According to this list, there have been 61 sets of brothers in the NBA, some with 3 or more players like the Barrys (Jon, Brent and Drew), the Joneses (Caldwell, Charles, Major and Wil), and the Russells (Campy, Frank and Walker).

I haven't looked up every one of the players, but here are some highlights. I start with brothers who have Blazer connections, then active NBA players who are brothers. I highlight some of the historic families and finally, I looked really hard for brother-sister pairs. Spoiler alert, one pair hails from Rip City!

Present and past brothers with Trail Blazer connections (starting with the twins)

Robin and Brook Lopez (twins)

Much has been written about the Lopez brothers (for example, from the NYT: Wonderful World of Lopez Twins) whose April 1 birthday seems to fit them well. (Full disclosure, that's my birthday too.) Before entering the NBA they played together for two years at Stanford. Brook has played his entire career with the Brooklyn Nets, while Robin is well-traveled, playing for the Phoenix Suns and New Orleans Hornets before landing with the Trail Blazers in 2013.

Jarron and Jason Collins (twins)

Before the Lopez twins took Stanford by storm, the Collins brothers were there. Fun fact: their high school teammate, actor Jason Segel, once won the team slam dunk contest. Jarron Collins played with the Blazers in the 2009 summer league. He joined the team again in 2014, completing 2 10-day contracts before retiring in 2014. His brother Jason was a trailblazer of a different kind, well known as the first openly gay player in the NBA.

Stephen and Joey Graham (twins)

Stephan Graham's basketball career included stints in the NBA, NBA Summer League, the D-League and Europe. He played 2 months with the Trail Blazers in 2006-2007. Twin brother Joey's professional career lasted from 2005-2011.

Horace and Harvey Grant (twins)

The final set of twins with Blazer connections are identical twins Horace and Harvey Grant. Horace, who entered the draft first in 1987, had 4 Championship rings with the Bulls and Lakers. Harvey, joining the NBA one year later, played for the Blazers 1993-96. Harvey has 4 boys with pro basketball aspirations so soon we may be talking about those brothers too. Jerian Grant has entered the 2015 draft and is projected to go late mid to late first round.

Nick and Steve Jones

Steve "Snapper" Jones, the older of the two, is a local favorite. He grew up in Portland and was a standout at Franklin High School. He attended the University of Oregon, and ended his NBA career as a Portland Trail Blazer in 1976. He spent another 20 years or so covering the NBA. He was the first analyst I remember listening to. Brother Nick also attended local high school (Marshall) and U of O. His NBA/ABA career ran from 1967-1972.

Calvin and Kenny Natt

Calvin played 11 seasons in the NBA and younger brother Kenny played for the NBA, CBA and WBL. Calvin was with the Trail Blazers 1980-1984. Kenny went on to have a career as an assistant coach. Calvin went on to become a mortician with his own funeral home.

Audie and Sylvester Norris

These might be my favorite set of names so shout out to Mrs. Norris. Audie played for the Trail Blazers 1982-1985 where he earned the nickname "Atomic Dog" from teammate Mychel Thompson (father of Klay Thompson). Sylvester played with the Spurs 1979-80.

Jim and John Paxson

Jim was the number 12 draft pick by Trail Blazers in 1979 and went on to play 9 seasons with them. He was two time All-Star selection. Younger brother John played in Chicago and San Antonio, earning 3 championships with the Bulls.

Steve and Tom Scheffler

Tom played mostly in Europe, but spent a season with the 1984-85 Trail Blazers. Steve was younger by 13 years and played with the Hornets and the Sonics, where he was a fan favorite off the bench.

Chuck and Wesley Person

Younger brother Wesley Person played with the Blazers for 33 games in a forgettable 2003-2004 season. Chuck was named NBA rookie of the year in 1987 while playing with the Pacers, retiring with the Sonics after a 14 year career.

Non-Blazer brothers who are active in the NBA

  • Pau and Marc Gasol

  • Goran and Zoran Dragic

  • Marcus and Markieff Morris (twins!)

  • Cody and Tyler Zeller (Brother Luke played in the D-League and briefly with the Suns)

  • Mason and Miles Plumlee

  • Paul and Elijah Millsap

  • Jrue and Justin Holiday

Even more brother duos in the current NBA

Mychel and Klay Thompson

When I initially saw this, I thought there was a misprint. A  life-long resident of Rip City I know that Mychal is Klay Thompson's dad. Turns out Thomspon Jr spells his name with "el" while dad uses "al". Klay's older brother Mychel plays mostly for the D-League and Summer League with one stint with the Cavaliers. In 2013 he played on the Santa Cruz Warriors with Steph Curry's brother Seth, where they were dubbed the "Splash Brothers of the D-League".

Blake and Taylor Griffin

I had no idea there was another Griffin out there. One more NBA brothers fun fact, Blake's older brother Taylor Griffin also played for the Santa Cruz Warriors in 2013. (Santa Cruz Warriors Media Guide). Taylor was drafted by Phoenix Suns in 2009 but has played most of his career in the D-League. No reports on if he drives a Kia.

A few more notable families

Jon, Brent and Drew Barry (90s-2000s)

Father Rick Berry saw 4 of his 5 sons play for the NBA: Jon (14 years), Brent (14 years) and Drew (6 years). Eldest brother Scooter had a 17 year career in the CBA, WBA and in Europe.  Brent probably had the most productive NBA career, with two NBA Championships (with the Spurs) and a Slam Dunk Contest win in 1996.

Tom and Dick Van Arsdale (60s and 70s)

Phoenix seems to really like playing brothers together. Earlier this year they had two sets of brothers on their roster, Markeif and Marcus Morris and Goran and Zoran Dragic (before they were traded to Miami). Twins Tom and Dick Van Arsdale each played 12 years in the league. Both twins appeared in 3 All Star games. They are featured in the Phoenix Sun's 25th anniversary book in a story called "The Original Twins". They played one season together in Phoenix (1976-77) and both retired at the end of it at age 35.

Caldwell, Charles, Major and Wil Jones (70s and 80s)

Four Jones brothers played in the NBA. They were an extraordinarily tall family. With 8 kids, they shortest was 6' 3". Two other brothers played minor league basketball. Six Jones brothers attended Albany State University in Albany, Georgia.

Where are all the sisters?

Its a pretty short list of brothers with sisters in the WNBA. Lets hope this list grows longer over the years.

Cheryl and Reggie Miller

While Cheryl was never a player in the WNBA (it was before her time), she was a pioneer for women in the sport. She coached WNBA's Phoenix Mercury from 1997-2000 while Reggie played 18 years (take note LaMarcus,18 years) with the Indiana Pacers (1987-2005). The Millers are probably the most visible sibling duo in the history of the Associations. They are the first (and so far only) brother-sister pair to be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Mfon and Ime Udoka

Hometown alert! Mfon and her younger brother Ime grew up in Portland. After graduating from Benson Polytechnic High School, she played for DePaul University. Her basketball career included time in the WNBA, NWBL, and the Nigerian National team (she is now an assistant coach).  Ime graduated from Jefferson High School and Portland State University. His path into the NBA was long and tough but when the Lakers called him up from the D-League in 2004 on a 10 day contract, he and Mfon became the first brother-sister combo in the W/NBA. Born just a few months after Portland won their first Championship, Ime continued to chase his NBA dream for years and finally made the Trail Blazer's roster in 2006.

Candace and Anthony Parker

Anthony Parker had a 15 year pro basketball career including 9 seasons in the NBA. Candace was the first pick in the 2008 WNBA Draft, selected by the Los Angeles Sparks. She was the first woman to dunk in a NCAA Championship Tournament and the second to dunk in a WNBA game. She was WNBA MVP in 2008 and 2013, and was named to the WNBA First Team 5 times.

Now go outside and take on your brother in the driveway! First to 11 doesn't have to mow the lawn.

XOXO Team Mom