The trade deadline came and went without the same kind of hoopla that fans have been accustomed to, to the degree that the biggest name moved was J.J. Redick being traded to the Milwaukee Bucks at the last minute. However, it was a trade first reported Wednesday that should have piqued the interest of fans. The Phoenix Suns, Houston Rockets and Sacramento Kings pulled together a three-team trade that came out of nowhere.
The Rockets were able to pry away the No. 5 overall pick, Thomas Robinson, from the Kings, but it was the Suns’ acquisition of Marcus Morris that is the reason behind this post. Marcus’ twin brother, Markieff Morris, was drafted by the Suns in the 2011 NBA Draft â€” coincidentally one pick after Marcus â€” and with this trade the Morris’ are now the second set of twins to ever play for the same team in NBA history.
After two years and 136 games apart, the first time in their lives they weren’t on the same team, the twins are reunited in the Arizona desert. The Morris’ represent the latest set of twins in the NBA, but they won’t be the last and they certainly aren’t the first. Let’s look at the five best in NBA history.
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5. JASON AND JARRON COLLINS
Jason and Jarron Collins are not two of the most talented players to ever set foot on an NBA court, but they have played a combined 20 years in the league. When you are seven-feet tall there will be some place for you on the floor. The Collins’ twins spent much more time watching from the bench — for their careers, they average 20.9 (Jason) and 15.8 (Jarron) minutes per game.
However, they were big bodies that could hold their own for the spot minutes they played. Jason is still playing today and was traded to the Washington Wizards from the Boston Celtics as part of the Jordan Crawford deal.
After their Stanford careers Jason was taken 18th overall in the first round, while Jarron lasted all the way until the 24th pick in the second round. While they may not have the best or most celebrated NBA careers they were able to stay in the league for a good amount of time.
4. MARCUS AND MARKIEFF MORRIS
As the Collins twins showed, having a great college career doesn’t always translate to success in the NBA. The Morris twins took the Big 12 by storm at Kansas following the departure of Cole Aldrich.
Going into the 2011 NBA Draft, Marcus was considered to be the better of the twins, but it has been Markieff who was able to establish himself quicker in the league. Their career numbers after a year and a half in are eerily similar; 19.9 MPG, 7.3 PPG, 4.3 RPG and 1.1 APG for Markieff and 18 MPG. 7.1 PPG, 3.3 RPG and 0.7 APG.
Now that they have been brought back together in the NBA it will be interesting to see how they are able to work together through the rest of their careers â€” or time together in Phoenix. Neither has been able to get a hold on a starting position so far, but so short into their careers the potential is there for bigger things to come from these two.
3. BROOK AND ROBIN LOPEZ
While the Morris twins are equally matched when it comes to talent, Brook Lopez carries the lion’s share in this tandem. Brook is coming off of his first All-Star appearance and has been â€” somewhat surprisingly â€” the best player on a Brooklyn Nets team that is currently in fourth place in the Eastern Conference standings, and one of the NBA’s best centers this season.
Meanwhile, Robin Lopez is serving mainly as a defender for the New Orleans Hornets and not contributing much else than a presence in the paint.
What the Lopez twins have over everyone else on this list is that they are the only set of twins to both be selected in the first round of the same draft, with Brook 10th overall and Robin 15th overall.
Brook is just now beginning to reach the peak of his career, while Robin’s potential has seemingly hit a plateau. But with Deron Williams and Joe Johnson playing alongside him on the Nets, Brook looks to be a central part of a good team for the foreseeable future. And who knows, if Anthony Davis and Austin Rivers pan out and Greivis Vasquez keeps up his stellar play, Robin could find himself as the starting center for a team contending for a playoff spot in the Western Conference season after season.
2. HORACE AND HARVEY GRANT
Admit it, you were expecting to see these two at No. 1 the moment you finished reading the headline of the post. That’s no knock, because these two are definitely one of the best sets of twins to ever play in the NBA.
Harvey didn’t have quite as acclaimed of a career that his brother did, but “The General” was more than able to hold his own in the league by averaging 9.9 PPG and 4.4 RPG in his 11-year career.
Horace must’ve been the luckier of the two twins because after being drafted to the Chicago Bulls in 1987, Horace was part of the Bulls’ first three-peat and played with Michael Jordan for six seasons. Then went to the Orlando Magic to play alongside Shaquille O’Neal and Penny Hardaway. Finally, he ended his career playing with Shaq and Kobe Bryant. With a teammate resume like that, I’m sure Harvey asked for an autograph or two from his brother during their careers, or that Uncle Horace was a favorite with his nephews and nieces when Christmas and birthdays came around.
The Grants were quintessential old-school power forwards. They used strength and brute force to work their way around the paint and move opponents out of their way in the process.
1. DICK AND TOM VAN ARSDALE
Never heard of them? I’d be surprised if you did. The Van Arsdales were both second-round picks in 1965 and were the first set of twins to ever play on the same team in the NBA. Like the Morris twins now, they played together for the Phoenix Suns.
They had a combined total of six All-Star selections in 12 seasons, a number that’s put in perspective by knowing the other eight players on this list have combined for four All-Star selections. Tom was the journeyman of the two playing for six teams, Detroit Pistons, Cincinnati Royals, Kansas City-Omaha Kings, Atlanta Hawks and Phoenix Suns.
Meanwhile, Dick only played for the New York Knicks and the Suns, he also coached the Suns for 26 games in the 1986-87 NBA season.
For their careers Dick averaged 16.4 PPG, 4.1 RPG, and 3.3 APG and Tom tallied 15.3 PPG 4.2 RPG and 2.2 APG. Stats alone show just how talented of a tandem the Van Arsdale twins were during their time in the NBA and their combined brilliance is why they find themselves atop this list.
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