LaVar Ball just won’t shut up.
Over the course of the past two months, the patriarch of a three-son basketball brood just can’t seem to resist the urge to say outlandish – maybe downright foolish – things.
It’s not what he says or thinks about his kids. In fact, if he were only braggadocious when it came to his sons, most people would be able to dismiss it as him being really, really, really, really, really, really proud of his family.
Where the LaVar Ball train goes off the rails is when he starts making these delusional claims pertaining to himself – while still trying to masquerade it as it being him lifting up his kids.
Here is a paraphrased list of some of the things he’s said:
He personally guaranteed UCLA, the college his oldest son Lonzo played this past season for, would win the NCAA tournament championship.
He said Charles Barkley would have won an NBA championship if Barkley were more like him.
You mean a middling bench player at Washington State, who averaged two points and two rebounds in one season.
Yeah, that’s exactly what those Phoenix Suns teams were missing.
And the coup de grace came when he said that he could have beaten Michael Jordan in a game of one-on-one. That he would’ve been “too big” for NBA’s G.O.A.T. and that he would’ve muscled him and taken him to the low post.
Sure thing, pal.
His delusions of grandeur aside, Ball proved himself to be “crazy like a fox” during his media whirlwind – constantly promoting his created, “Big Baller Brand”, by outwardly talking about it and wearing the apparel whenever he appeared in front of a camera.
Ball said it was his plan to market his sons – Lonzo, LaMelo and LiAngelo – as a “package deal” for shoe companies to co-brand with “BBB”. He said he was seeking a “billion dollar deal” that included all three of his sons as clients. Lonzo is almost a surefire top-three pick in the upcoming NBA draft; the second oldest, LaMelo, signed with UCLA and will be a freshman guard with the Bruins this coming season and the youngest will be a junior Chino Hills High School in California.
Ball’s motives were probably actually coming from a pretty decent place. He wanted to set his kids up for financial success – even though his asking price was a bit steep – by using their basketball talents.
But it would seem that LaVar has messed that up, too.
On April 30th ESPN.com’s Darren Rovell reported that Nike, Under Armour and Adidas all said “no thanks” to Ball and “BBB” because of LaVar’s insistence that “they license his upstart Big Baller Brand from him.”
So all three of the heavyweights in the shoe game told Ball to take his and go home.
Who’s going to produce Lonzo’s shoes now?
Even after getting stonewalled by shoe companies, Ball is still out here making outlandish statements.
Yahoo’s The Vertical’s Nick DePaula reported Tuesday that, Ball’s brand is “targeting the $200 tier for its debut Big Baller Brand basketball sneaker.”
You only have to shell out $100 for a pair of Stephen Curry’s Under Armour shoes. Kevin Durant’s latest Nike shoes go for a cool $150. The most expensive Nike’s on the market are LeBron James’ latest – which retail for $220.
LaVar Ball did say that he thinks Lonzo Ball is better than Curry. He said that if you put his son, who was still helping the Bruins reach their ultimate destination of a Sweet 16 loss to Kentucky, on Golden State’s team that he would prove to be a better fit and elevate the Warriors to higher heights than the league’s first unanimous MVP could.
Come on man,
We all are pretty anxious to see which team ultimately ends up drafting Lonzo Ball next month, but I think the better question is: who’s shoes will he be wearing when he gets there?