Things went smoothly for Lonzo Ball, playing at Chino Hills High School, then one year at UCLA, and ultimately being drafted in the lottery by the Los Angeles Lakers, just like his dad LaVar Ball planned. Things haven’t gone quite so well for Lonzo’s younger brothers, LiAngelo and LaMelo. Thanks in part to their boisterous dad, the Ball brothers have been thrust into the spotlight with all eyes on their every move and some have been very questionable.
Earlier this year, LaVar pulled LaMelo out of Chino Hills High School after disagreements with their new basketball coach, Dennis Latimore. LaVar’s boys were the big draws for the school and he felt it entitled him to a say in the basketball program. Latimore said LaMelo’s days of taking 50 shots a game were over and LaVar wasn’t with it. Though the move was criticized, it wasn’t too bad since LaMelo is just a junior, still eligible to play AAU ball and has a standing offer at UCLA. LaVar, however, then took things a step further.
LiAngelo was indefinitely suspended from the UCLA basketball team after he and two teammates were arresting for stealing items from a Louis Vuitton store in China during a team trip. LaVar responded by pulling the freshman baller from the school. That move was met with much more scrutiny. LiAngelo needs a lot of work and he has no chance of being drafted in June, according to ESPN NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski.
Now both boys are without teams and very much in need of development and actual playing exposure. Some basketball insiders have floated the idea of LiAngelo and LaMelo potentially playing overseas, and though they have enough name recognition to draw some interest, the move isn’t as easy as perceived.
Most teams overseas have already begun their seasons, so adding the Ball brothers isn’t exactly feasible. Also, some teams will likely be wary about signing them knowing that LaVar and the issues he brings is apart of the deal.
Earlier this week, it was reported that the Lithuanian team, Lietkabelis Panevezys was interested in signing both Ball brothers, but the team’s head coach Arturs Stalberg shut that down, noting that the team has openings in security since they’re experienced in that field.
Though there are some substantial issues, LaVar might have a trick up his sleeve. The polarizing figure has managed to turn his boys into well-known figures and turn a hefty profit. Their names alone will likely draw interest from someone at some point.