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The Crabb Brothers on Partnership, Competition, & Swearing

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We all know and love the Crabb brothers. They’re two of the best players on Tour, very fun to watch, and always have a little spicy competitive fire during their Crabb Boils. I sat down with them to learn a little more about their childhood, what it’s like to live together, and who is the messier brother.

But first, I had to get a little background on growing up and learning how to play beach volleyball in Honolulu, Hawaii (which is pretty much all of our collective dream come true, am I right?).

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Trevor:

Our dad was a beach volleyball player, and we grew up just watching him play all the time with his group of friends and players. The older generation like Kevin Wong and Stein Metzger, we grew up kind of watching those guys play as well down there. We really learned a lot, just even from watching the game. And then we had the Baby Court (read more here), so we started playing right away on a smaller net, a smaller court, which was a huge benefit to learning the game at a young age. Then we graduated to the bigger courts probably around early high school and started playing on the men’s court with some of the older guys.

What was that graduation process like? How could you advance from the Baby Court to a proper court?

Trevor: I think the deciding factor was just being able to hit on a Men’s net.

And did you two play together?

Taylor: We maybe played a couple times together, but no, it was mostly with other people.

When you started on the AVP, it was together. At least for Taylor, it was. What was playing together like?

Taylor: I thought it was perfect for both of our careers. We were both kind of new. Trevor had been playing on the Tour for like two years before I got there. But I think we complemented each other well. We elevated each other and obviously, we played pretty well together. We had a lot of good finishes, and then it was the perfect timing for us to split up and go our separate ways. We both picked up amazing partners that we learned a lot from. So I think it was the best thing for both of our careers.

(Taylor partnered with Jake Gibb and experienced immediate success. They won eight AVP titles together and eventually qualified for the Tokyo Olympics. Trevor picked up Sean Rosenthal and had a great season learning with him before picking up childhood friend Tri Bourne halfway through the next season. They’re still together and have an impressive acumen as a team, including two AVP wins.)

Trevor: Yeah, you kind of rarely see two younger guys flying together nowadays. That’s another special thing that we did. We had all that success as two young guys and no veteran on the team. And then when we split up, we both picked up a veteran so it was a big difference there.

You were living together both as partners and then as newly broken up partners. How was that?

Trevor: Definitely now living together, not playing together, it’s a lot easier in terms of just general life. Back when we were playing together and living together, just you’re with that person a lot. It’s a little much, just naturally, not even that much to do with being brothers. Just in terms of being with the same person over and over and traveling. That can be tough. Even now playing with Tri – we’re best friends. We’re always traveling and playing together, and at times, we both get sick of each other. It’s just natural.

Taylor: I think you see that a lot with partners. By the time they split up, you can just tell they’re kind of burnt out with each other. And you know to amplify all of that, we were living together. I don’t think any other partners live together, so we are literally with each other 24/7 whether it’s at home or on the road. There are a lot of ups and downs, and always a lot of emotions that are amplified when you’re brothers and you’re both competing in a professional sport together. But at the same time, you also realize that you both want the same thing.

Ok, now for the light questions. Who wakes up later?

Trevor: Me.

Taylor: Trevor.

Do you grocery shop together and have a big pot that you’re working from?

Trevor: Separate.

Taylor: We don’t do everything together, Kim.

Copy that. Who is a better cook?

Trevor: Taylor cooks more.

Taylor: We’re the same, but I cook more.

Who is better at video games?

Taylor: Me.

Trevor: Probably Taylor now because I haven’t touched them in a long time. We used to play a lot together. That was probably one of the biggest things we did at home. But we both kinda stopped naturally.

What games were you playing?

Trevor: A lot of Xbox sports games – NBA and Madden.

Taylor: Stuff we could play against each other.

Always competing. Do you play any board games?

Trevor: We both love backgammon and cribbage.

Who’s better?

Trevor: Me.

Do you agree, Taylor?

Taylor: No, but I’ll let him have that one.

Who swears more?

Trevor: Me.

Choice word?

Trevor: Definitely just F-bombs.

Who is nicer?

Trevor: Taylor.

Taylor: Me.

Who is cleaner?

Trevor: Me. I’m very clean.

Taylor: I go through spurts. Like I won’t put my clothes away, and then I’ll get in a cleaning mode and organize everything.

Do you plan to always live together while in Southern California?

Taylor: We’re actually looking to sell our place and buy a duplex so that we have our own separate living areas.

Will you end up in Hawaii after volleyball?

Taylor: Yeah, that’s the plan.

For both of you?

Trevor: Yup.

Okay, last question. If you’re not playing each other, are you rooting for your brother?

Taylor: Yeah.

Trevor: Yeah, for the most part.

Category: Athlete Stories, Fun, Lifestyle

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