Any son of a successful father will find it difficult to emulate that same success, especially given the pressure and the looming shadow of their father’s accomplishments. This is made worse however if your father was a sporing legend and found his success in front of millions and millions of sports fans.
In spite of this, throughout history there have been several notable athletes who have not only followed in their father’s footsteps, but gone on to achieve great things in their own right, despite the pressure and weight on their shoulders. Let’s take a look at just a few of these incredible sportsmen who have moved out of their father’s shadow.
Jack and John Elway
Back in the 60s, was considered to be one of the most promising young footballers in the college system but all of this changed when he was forced out of the game with a knee injury. Instead of giving up, Elway senior dedicated his life to coaching at college level and is considered to be one of the best that has ever done it. Son John Elway would go on to realise the success that his father could’ve had and managed to pick up 2 Super Bowl championships with the Denver Broncos, the team were he spent his entire career.
Kobe and Joe Bryant
Joe Bryant or Jellybean as he was nicknamed, was a strong player for the Philadelphia 76ers who amassed over 5,000 points and 1,200 rebounds throughout his career. Bryant senior never achieved greatness but he no doubt laid down the foundations for his son Kobe to pick up the baton. Kobe Bryant spent his career with the LA Lakers and lead them to 5 NBA Championships during his incredible career. Kobe broke records and inspired thousands of players with his style, scoring ability and his last second shooting which won many games for the Lakers franchise. Kobe is widely considered to be one of the best to play the game and there is only Michael Jordan who is considered better than the Lakers man.
Bobby and Barry Bonds
The world of baseball would simply not be the same without the surname Bonds and both father Bobby and son Barry have lead careers which saw them both smash records and pick up numerous awards. Bobby Bonds became the first ever baseball player to complete a 30-30 season, stealing over 30 bases and hitting 30 homers, he would repeat this for 5 seasons in total during his career. The only other man to complete such a feat? His son Barry of course, widely considered to be the greatest baseball player to ever play the game and the all time leading home run scorer who has been inducted into the Hall of Fame since his retirement. Despite the controversy which Bonds jnr often courted, there is no way that his exploits in the game will ever be forgotten and its possible that they will never be surpassed.