NBA

Is the 76ers’ Tobias Harris Related to the Nuggets’ Gary Harris?

Family legacies are common in the NBA, with many father-and-son duos, like Tim Hardaway Sr. and Jr. Likewise, plenty of brothers have gone through the league. Seth and Stephen Curry, Brook and Robin Lopez, and Pau and Marc Gasol are just a few family pairings who’ve share the court.

Other players generate confusion due to identical last names. For instance, fans often speculate about whether Denver Nuggets guard Gary Harris is related to Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris. Let’s look at what each Harris has accomplished in the NBA and finally put to bed the debate about their family relation.

The Nuggets’ Gary Harris

Gary spent two years playing college basketball for Michigan State. The Spartan racked up many honors, including Big Ten Freshman of the Year, first-team All-Big Ten, and All-Big Ten Defensive Team. In two years, Gary averaged 14.9 points, two assists, and 1.6 steals per game, while shooting 44% from the field and 37.6% from three.

The Chicago Bulls selected Gary with the 19th pick in the 2014 NBA draft, only to trade him to Denver later that night. The guard had a muted first season, missing some time with a back injury and playing just 13.1 minutes per game off the bench. Things changed in his second season, however, when Gary became a starter.

That year, his scoring average jumped up to 12.3 points per game. The next two years, Gary’s scoring kept rising — first to 14.9 in 2016-17, then to 17.5 in 2017-18. At that point, people considered the 23-year-old one of the most promising shooting guards in the league. Best of all, he was knocking down three at nearly a 40% rate.

Gary’s production has cooled off somewhat in the last two years. Whether this is a product of a declining skillset or just the Nuggets’ deep roster is unclear. This year, however, Gary is averaging just 10.2 points per game — his worst average since his first year — and shooting a dismal 29.9% from three-point range.

The 76ers’ Tobias Harris

Tobias spent one year playing college basketball for the Tennessee Volunteers. Then, in the 2011 NBA Draft, the Charlotte Bobcats drafted him with the 19th pick only to trade him to the Milwaukee Bucks later that night. Now in his ninth NBA season, Tobias has played for five teams.

In 2013, the Bucks traded Tobias to Orlando as part of a package to get J.J. Redick. He blossomed in his first year with the Magic, putting up 17.3 points, 8.5 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per game. Although his numbers have varied somewhat since then, Tobias has established himself as one of the steadiest forwards in the NBA.

After stints with the Detroit Pistons and Los Angeles Clippers, Tobias has played with the 76ers for the last two years. Despite the star-studded roster, his offensive output remains impressively consistent. Still, with the 76ers struggling this season, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Tobias end up somewhere else soon.

Are Gary Harris and Tobias Harris related?

The answer to this burning question is no, Gary and Tobias are not related. Gary grew up in Indiana, the son of two athletes, Gary Sr. and Joy Harris. He has one younger brother, Trey, who he’s quite close with.  

Tobias, meanwhile, was born and raised on Long Island, outside of New York City. One of five children born to Torrel and Lisa Harris, he has three brothers and two sisters; many have also played competitive college sports. Although Gary and Tobias are not related, both will enjoy long NBA careers if they can maintain the productivity they’ve shown so far.

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