Sport’s Ultimate Sibling Rivalries

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If you grew up with a sibling, you know what rivalry is all about. Your older brother always got what he wanted, and that’s why he’s more successful than you; or your younger sister was always babied so, that’s why she’s more emotionally balanced. Ahem, back to my main point – not many of us have had to go tête-à-tête with our siblings like Jim and John Harbaugh at this Sunday’s Super Bowl. Coaches of the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers, these brothers (born 15 months apart) are in for the ultimate sibling faceoff. John Harbaugh took the victory this time with his Ravens, after the nail-biting game he told his brother he loved him and Jim replied, “Congratulations.” The fact that both brothers made it to the Super Bowl is significant, but having two brothers make it to the top is rare; in most families, there is only one superstar. So here is our list of successful athletes and the brothers who sit in their shadows.

By Tianna Robinson with files from Peter Muggeridge

Wayne and Brent Gretzky: I don’t even have to tell you who Wayne Gretzky is. He’s practically Canadian royalty. But did you know he has a brother? His name is Brent and yes, he was also a hockey player. He scored one career NHL goal, barely a blip on the radar compared to his brother’s 894. In his 13-game stint with Tampa Bay, he played his big brother once. He said of the experience, “We must have faced off 15 times and I won one. I remember chasing him behind the net. I knew what he was going to do and I still found myself looking for my jock. The hardest part was after the game, going and watching ESPN. It was older Gretzky shows young Gretzky how to play hockey.” 


Eric and Brett Lindros: These two are similar in ways of physical build and concussions suffered. However, as a modern power forward, Eric scored 372 goals in his career and although Brett was drafted in the first round by the New York Islanders, his concussions got in the way of his game and he only managed a miserable two goals.

Mark and Marty Howe: Sons of Gordie Howe, one of the all-time greats, Mark and Marty had a big advantage. However, Mark made it to the Hall of Fame while Marty wound up with only two goals and an unremarkable career.

Hank and Tommie Aaron:  The list goes on and on for Hank: he is a hall of famer, broke Babe Ruth’s homerun record, retired with the most career homers, 755. He’s one of the greatest baseball players…ever (not to mention his charming good looks). Tommie also played for the Braves but was never able to fill his big brother’s shoes. He finished with just 13 homers.

Joe and Dom DiMaggio: Joe DiMaggio, Yankees great, won multiple World Series, set a record with a 56-game hit streak and, to top it off, had the ultimate trophy wife, Marilyn Monroe. Dom, on the other hand, will be remembered in baseball for wearing glasses when he played.