Fathers Day Special – Best Father-Son Team in NBA History

Happy Father’s Day everyone! It’s no secret that dads around the world have a huge influence on their sons, especially in these 16 player-son two on two teams. Without their dads, these players wouldn’t be who they are today. So the question is, whose the best? What father and son could take down all the other father-son teams? Will it be Steph and Dell Curry? Klay and Mychal Thompson? Or even Domantas and Arvydas Sabonis?

I created a random bracket of the 16 most notable father-son duos in NBA history. Let the games begin!

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Additional Rules: 

  1. The father and son both needed to have played in at least one NBA game (sorry Lavar)
  2. Fathers with more than one son are allowed to play with more than one team.
  3. The players on all the teams will be playing as if they were in their prime.
  4. The bracket is randomized, meaning there is no seeding. The complete bracket is at the end of the article.
  5. The games will be played on a half-court: 1’s and 2’s to 21.

Sweet Sixteen

1. Harvey Grant and Jerian Grant vs. John Stockton and David Stockton

Despite the unreal drive and kick playstyle of John Stockton and the better-than-expected shooting of David Stockton, the combined athleticism of Harvey and Jerian Grant outclasses the Stocktons easily. The Grants beat the Stocktons.

2. Doc Rivers and Austin Rivers vs. Mike Dunleavy and Mike Dunleavy Jr.

Despite Mike Dunleavy Jr.’s great three-point shooting, once again, athleticism wins out as Doc and Austin Rivers quickly move the ball back and forth with some undeniable chemistry. The Dunleavy’s can’t keep up, so the Rivers beat the Dunleavy’s.

3. Joe Bryant and Kobe Bryant vs. Dell Curry and Seth Curry

For those of you who don’t know, Joe Bryant was a cutter. His shot had absolutely no range, and he was known for his athleticism and dunks out of the post. Regardless of Joe Bryant’s lack of range, neither Curry is athletic enough to keep up with Kobe, so the Bryants beat the Curry’s.

4. Tim Hardaway and Tim Hardaway Jr. vs. Henry Bibby and Mike Bibby

Once again, athleticism decides the game. Despite the clutch gene of Mike Bibby and Henry Bibby’s all-around game for a point guard, the Hardaways dash around the court. The Bibby’s can’t keep up, so the Hardaway’s beat the Bibby’s.

5. Bill Walton and Luke Walton vs. Mychal Thompson and Klay Thompson

The Waltons and Thompsons play very similarly. Let the dads go down into the post and score with hook shots and power, as the sons run around the perimeter looking for open jump shots. Unfortunately for the Waltons, the Thompsons destroy them in the post and on the perimeter so the Thompsons beat the Waltons.

6. Arvydas Sabonis and Domantas Sabonis vs. Gary Payton and Gary Payton II

By far, this would be the weirdest matchup of the first round. The Sabonis’ are crafty and powerful big men, who can easily outpower the Paytons in the post. Unfortunately for them, the Paytons effort, energy, and heart eventually tire out the European big men with their never-stop-running mentality, so the Paytons beat the Sabonis’.

7. Dell Curry and Stephen Curry vs. Glenn Robinson and Glenn Robinson III

While it may seem obvious for the Currys to destroy anyone and everyone in this tournament, the Robinsons give them a tough first game. The combined athleticism of the Robinsons does a surprisingly alright job at defending Steph on the perimeter, but as they get caught up in double-teaming Steph, Dell takes over the game from three-point range so the Currys beat the Robinsons.

8. Harvey Grant and Jerami Grant vs. Rick Barry and Brent Barry

Don’t get me wrong. Rick Barry was a great player, but Jerami Grant’s unrelenting athleticism and defense may have been too much to handle. When you consider the Grants’ defense challenging the Barrys’ offense, it could get wild, and that it did. With the Grant’s up one, Rick Barry attempts a fadeaway midrange shot. Jerami Grant jumps from out of nowhere to block the shot and save the game. He picks up the ball right under the basket and lays it in for the win. The Grants (unbelievably) beat the Barry’s.

Elite Eight

1. Harvey Grant and Jerian Grant vs. Doc Rivers and Austin Rivers

Following Harvey Grant’s two upsets in round one, his spirits are high taking on the Rivers. His post-up presence was far too much for the Rivers to handle, forcing them to continuously leave Jerian Grant wide open from beyond the arc. The Grants playstyles compliment each other perfectly, so the Grants beat the Rivers.

2. Joe Bryant and Kobe Bryant vs. Tim Hardaway and Tim Hardaway Jr.

Yet again, Kobe Bryant takes over the game offensively. He scores all 21 points for the Bryants as the Hardaways struggle to find an answer on defense. Joe Bryant locks up Hardaway Jr. while Kobe takes on Hardaway. Despite a couple of long-range bombs for Hardaway Jr, Kobe couldn’t be stopped. The Bryants beat the Hardaways.

3. Mychal Thompson and Klay Thompson vs. Gary Payton and Gary Payton II

Coming off of an inspiring game one against two men who weighed over 100 combined pounds more than them, the Paytons weren’t done yet. Trying their hardest to switch on and off of Klay while still attempting to deal with Mychal in the post was still a little bit too much to ask for though, so the Thompsons beat the Paytons.

4. Dell Curry and Stephen Curry vs. Harvey Grant and Jerami Grant

After the Grants’ wild upset against the Barry’s in round one, they were prepared to continue the magic against the tournament favorites: the Currys. After a fairly strong start to the game, Steph heated up from three. When Steph heats up from three, you know what happens. The Curry’s beat the Grants.

Final Four

1. Harvey Grant and Jerian Grant vs. Joe Bryant and Kobe Bryant

The Grants had been gifted two matchups that greatly favored their large and athletic playstyles. Unfortunately, no playstyle is favored against Kobe Bryant. To go along with a couple of son-to-father lobs to Joe Bryant, Kobe continued to dominate the tournament. The Bryants beat the Grants.

2. Mychal Thompson and Klay Thompson vs. Dell Curry and Stephen Curry

This is the moment we’ve all been waiting for. The splash brothers take each other on with their fathers by their sides. The Thompsons get out to an early lead playing through Mychal Thompson’s size and post ability, but then Curry begins to heat up. Klay does an alright job at keeping him in check while also matching every single three-pointer scored. The rebounding of Mychal Thompson down low was just too difficult for the Currys to make up with from shooting, so the Thompsons beat the Curry’s.

The Championship

Joe Bryant and Kobe Bryant vs. Mychal Thompson and Klay Thompson

Kobe Bryant has taken over every single game so far. Joe has done enough defensively to compliment Kobe through each game. Mychal Thompson and Klay Thompson compliment each other perfectly, as Mychal continues to get deep into the post against the smaller players while Klay waits patiently along the perimeter for any pass into a three-pointer.

Despite Kobe’s takeover mentality, the fluidity and smoothness of the Thompsons make the Bryants look silly, as they blow them out in the championship. The Thompsons beat the Bryants.

There you have it. Klay and Mychal Thompson make up the best father-son 2v2 team.

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