November 30, 2022
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For some athletes, sports runs in the family

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It’s Thanksgiving, a day when many families gather to share a big meal and good times. So that has me thinking of sports families.

What’s a sports family? The Kordas for example. Petr Korda was a top tennis professional back in the 1980s and ’90s. He married another tennis pro (Regina Rajchrtová), and they have three children.

Nelly Korda is the top-ranked women’s professional golfer in the world. Her sister, Jessica, is ranked Number 18. Their brother, Sebastian, chose to play tennis. He is ranked 34th in the world. That’s a lot of athletic talent sitting around the table whenever the Kordas get together.

Of course, if sisters Serena and Venus Williams meet up over the holidays that is 30 major tennis titles in the house. Serena won 23, and Venus won seven.

The Mannings are a famous football family of quarterbacks. Most football fans know that before they appeared in TV ads brothers Peyton and Eli each won two Super Bowl rings during their National Football League (NFL) careers.

Less well-known is that their father, Archie Manning, was an all-American quarterback at the University of Mississippi who went on to a 13-year career in the NFL. Together the Mannings threw for more than 150,000 yards in the NFL.

Christian Pulisic is a star on the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team. His father and mother played college soccer at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. But the Pulisics may not sit down for Thanksgiving dinner this year. Christian is busy playing in the World Cup.

Basketball families? Stephen Curry and his brother Seth are sharpshooting guards in the National Basketball Association (NBA). In fact, Stephen may be the greatest shooter ever.

The Curry brothers probably inherited their shooting skills from their dad. Dell Curry played 16 seasons in the NBA, from 1997 t0 2002, after starring at Virginia Tech.

But for hoops it is hard to beat the Barrys. Rick Barry was a Hall of Fame player from 1965 to 1980 who had three sons — Brent, Jon and Drew — who played in the NBA. Brent and Jon each played for 14 seasons.

There may be another basketball family on the way. LeBron James has said he wants to play long enough to play in the NBA with his son Bronny. The younger James is 17 and a top high school prospect.

Almost all families have some kind of sports history. Maybe your dad played youth baseball or your mom has run a marathon. Or someone in the family can tell of the disappointment of being cut from high school basketball and baseball teams. (That’s part of my story.)

Ask your family about their sports stories this Thanksgiving. And if you get outside for touch football or a game called H-O-R-S-E at basketball hoop, maybe you can make new family sports stories.

Fred Bowen writes the sports opinion column for KidsPost. He is the author of 27 sports books for kids. His latest book is “Hardcourt: Stories From 75 Years of the National Basketball Association.”



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