MANILA, Philippines – NBA players took different paths to the big league.
Some boast natural talent, some had to compensate lack of skill with hard work, while some were simply born to athletic families.
Here are some NBA players who have notable athlete relatives:
1. Joakim Noah
Los Angeles Clippers center Joakim Noah apparently acquired the athletic genes from his father and former tennis star Yannick Noah.
Yannick won singles and doubles Grand Slam titles in the French Open in 1983 and 1984, respectively, and reached a world ranking of No. 3 during his prime.
Joakim, meanwhile, was once one of the best big men in the NBA, winning the Defensive Player of the Year and earning an All-NBA First Team nod in 2014 when he was a member of the Chicago Bulls.
2. RJ Barrett
Growing up, New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett had the perfect role model as he chased his basketball dreams: godfather and NBA legend Steve Nash.
Nash is considered as one of the greatest point guards in league history after bagging two Most Valuable Player awards, leading the NBA in assists for 5 seasons, and making the All-NBA First Team thrice.
Still in his rookie season, Barrett is expected to help turn the tides for the Knicks, who have not made the playoffs for the last 6 seasons.
3. Mike Conley
Before Utah Jazz guard Mike Conley Jr saw action in NBA, his father Mike Conley Sr had already made a name for himself as a track and field superstar.
Conley Sr won gold medals in triple jump in the 1992 Olympics and 1993 World Championships and a silver medal in the 1984 Olympics.
Meanwhile, Conley Jr – before his trade to the Jazz – played 12 seasons for the Memphis Grizzlies, for which he is the all-time franchise leader in points.
4. Domantas Sabonis
Although he has a long way to go to match what his father and basketball icon Arvydas Sabonis had accomplished, Indiana Pacers big man Domantas Sabonis is turning into a star in his own right.
Domantas played for one season for the Oklahoma City Thunder before he flourished with the Pacers and clinched an All-Star selection this season.
Arvydas, on the other hand, has a long list of achievements, among them an inclusion in FIBA’s 50 Greatest Players and an induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011.
5. Javale McGee
Pamela McGee holds the distinction as the first WNBA player to have a son drafted in the NBA: Los Angeles Lakers center Javale McGee.
The McGee matriarch won a gold medal with Team USA in the 1984 Olympics and got nabbed as the No. 2 overall pick in the inaugural WNBA season in 1997.
While Pamela lasted only two years in the WNBA, Javale has charted a long career in the NBA, where he is already in his 14th season and a two-time champion with the Golden State Warriors.
6. Jrue Holiday
The basketball blood simply runs in the Holiday family.
New Orleans Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday was the first from his family to reach the NBA before his brothers Justin and Aaron of the Pacers followed suit.
The Holidays made NBA history as the first trio of siblings to play in the same game when the Pelicans beat the Pacers, 120-98, in December 28 last year.
Jrue also has another athlete in the family in wife Lauren Cheney, a retired football player who won gold medals with Team USA in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. – Rappler.com