For some athletes, sports run in the family


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

What is a Sports Family? The Kordas, for example. Petr Korda was a top tennis professional in the 1980s and 1990s. He married another tennis pro (Regina Rajchrtov√°), and they have three children.

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

Of course, when sisters Serena and Venus Williams meet over the holiday season, that’s 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 appearing in TV ads, brothers Peyton and Eli each won two Super Bowl rings during their National Football League (NFL) careers.

Less 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 over 150,000 yards in the NFL.

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

Basketball families? Stephen Curry and his brother Seth are marksmen in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Stephen might just be the best shooter ever.

The Curry brothers probably inherited their marksmanship from their father. Dell Curry played 16 seasons in the NBA, from 1997 to 2002, after starring at Virginia Tech.

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

Another basketball family may be 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 candidate.

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

This Thanksgiving, ask your family about their sports stories. And if you go outside for touch football or a game of HORSE on the basketball hoop, you may be able to create new family sports stories.

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

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