Ever since Trevor Booker entered the league, he has been waiting for the opportunity to play against his first cousin, Jordan Hill of the Houston Rockets. Hill, an Atlanta native, spent every summer with Booker’s family in South Carolina.
Since they were about 7 or 8 – “might’ve been earlier than that,” Booker said – the two would spend countless hours in Booker’s backyard, playing one-on-one, mixing it up, having impromptu dunk contests, and even exchanging punches from time to time.
“We got competitive,” Booker said. “Sometimes it got nasty, but you know it was all love, though.”
Booker was out of the rotation last season when the Rockets played the Wizards. When the teams met two weeks ago at Verizon Center, both players played about 11 minutes but never at the same time. Afterward, the two spoke about yet another missed opportunity.
“We definitely did,” Hill said. “It’s definitely crazy. It’s just funny.”
Both are hopeful that the chance really comes on Friday, with the Wizards and Rockets playing for the last time this season. “This might be the moment. I’m still looking forward to it,” Booker said.
Hill and Booker both said that if it occurs, and the two have a chance to box out each other, or go one-on-one in the post, the exchange would probably be reminiscent of those exhausting backyard battles.
“Probably be a lot of trash talking. A lot of fouls, probably. Definitely will be a real aggressive match,” Hill said. “It was having fun. Playing hard, arguing, fighting. That street ball, just aggressive playing. Been doing that since we was small. Been doing it for a long time.”
Booker said the games often had to be played aggressively, since Hill always had the height advantage. Hill still does, with the 6-foot-10 forward towering over Booker by three inches. Booker said it might get a little physical on Friday, but added that they won’t go overboard and exchange any elbows.
“He definitely don’t want to throw ‘bows with me. You know he a little frail,” Booker said.
It’s all love, though.
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