Are LaVar Ball’s $500 sneakers worth the hype?

This summer, the Big Baller Brand started taking orders for the Zo2 sneaker — the signature kicks of Lakers rookie guard Lonzo Ball. But despite its eye-popping $ 495 price tag and a botched December rollout that earned the company an F from the Better Business Bureau, the sneakers, available only through the company’s website, are…
Fashion | New York Post

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LaVar Ball To Launch A Basketball League For High School Grads

LaVar Ball continues to put his stamp on basketball and the entire world of sports.

He’s already disrupted the college recruiting system, shut down Trump and given the Lakers fits in the PR department. Now word has surfaced that Ball wants to start his own basketball league for high school players who don’t want to go to college.


According to ESPN, the league will be for top-ranked players who graduate from high school but don’t want to go the college route.

“Getting these players is going to be easy,” Ball told ESPN. “This is giving guys a chance to get a jump start on their career, to be seen by pro scouts, and we’re going to pay them because someone has to pay these kids.”

The so-called “Ball’s Junior Basketball Association,” which Ball says will be funded by his Big Baller Brand, looks to pay salaries ranging from $ 3,000 a month for the lowest-ranked player to $ 10,000 a month for a top ranked player. He’s looking for 10 teams and 80 players in total, with teams being placed in cities such as Brooklyn, LA, Dallas and Atlanta.

Ball’s inspiration for the League derives from comments made by NCAA President Mark Emmert when asked about Ball’s impact on college sports.

“Is this about someone being part of a university and playing basketball or any other sport with that school’s jersey on representing that institution, or is it about preparing me for my career, my professional career as a ballplayer,” Emmert responded. “If it’s the latter, you can do that inside a university and that might be a really good way to go. But if you don’t want to and you don’t think that it’s right for your family then don’t come.”

“He was right. Those kids who are one and done, they shouldn’t be there with the NCAA trying to hold them hostage, not allowing them to keep the jersey they wear while selling replicas of them in stores,” Ball said. “So our guy isn’t going to go to Florida State for a year. He’s going to come to our league.”

The League will be sponsored by Big Baller Brand, with all of the players required to wear BBB products, head to toe.

“We’ll give it to them all,” Ball said. “They’ll be wearing our uniform, our shoes, our T-shirts and our hoodies.”

Although they will adopt the rules of the NBA, the BBB league won’t be using a silhouette of of Jerry West dribbling. You already know the deal.


“We don’t need a logo of a guy dribbling,” Ball said, an obvious reference to the NBA’s famous Jerry West silhouette. “Nobody does that anymore.”

So of course Lonzo, now going for a dunk, will be the league’s logo.

-This article originally appeared on The Shadow League

 

The post LaVar Ball To Launch A Basketball League For High School Grads appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Lifestyle | Black Enterprise

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Donald Trump Responds to LaVar Ball: ‘I Should Have Left Them In Jail!’

On Sunday, Donald Trump tweeted that he should have left the three UCLA players who were recently caught shoplifting during their trip to China – one being the brother of Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball – in jail. Trump called out LaVar Ball specifically, saying he is both "unaccepting" and "ungrateful" for the role he played in getting his son LiAngelo Ball back to the United

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: Donald Trump Responds to LaVar Ball: ‘I Should Have Left Them In Jail!’

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Trump’s LaVar Ball tweets cross a line — even for him

Before 6 a.m. ET, Donald Trump had already sent two tweets about the self-proclaimed “big baller” LaVar Ball.


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LaVar Ball Is Feuding with Donald Trump Over His Son’s Release From China

(WASHINGTON) — Outspoken basketball dad LaVar Ball questioned the extent of President Donald Trump’s involvement in securing his son’s release from the custody of Chinese authorities during a combative 20-minute CNN interview on Monday night.

The president, in tweets Sunday, said he should have left LiAngelo Ball and two other UCLA basketball players accused of shoplifting in jail because LaVar Ball “is unaccepting of what I did for his son” and “very ungrateful!” LaVar Ball has refused to thank Trump.

LaVar Ball didn’t back down during the CNN interview, telling host Chris Cuomo that Trump has more important things to do than ask for his gratitude.

“That’s on your mind, that a father didn’t say ‘Thank you’? And you’re the head of the U.S.? Come on,” Ball said. “There’s a lot of other things that’s going on. Let him do his political affairs and let me handle my son, and let’s just stay in our lane.”

Ball suggested that he and Chinese president Xi Jinping had more to do with securing his son’s release than the president.

“Did (Trump) help the boys get out? I don’t know. If I was going to thank somebody, I probably would thank President Xi. He’s in China. He’s the president of China,” Ball said, later adding: “I helped my son get out of China. I had some people that had boots on the ground that knew the situation.”

Ball also pushed back against Trump’s suggestion that shoplifting “is a very big deal in China.”

“It wasn’t a big deal because being raised in South Central LA, I’ve seen harsher things. I’ve seen 16, 17-year-old kids that have had to go to jail for life, that were my friends,” Ball said. “He wasn’t physical. He returned it. He fessed up to it.”

LiAngelo and fellow UCLA freshmen Jalen Hill and Cody Riley have been suspended indefinitely. They were arrested and questioned about stealing from high-end stores next to the team’s hotel in Hangzhou, where the Bruins stayed before leaving for Shanghai to play Georgia Tech. All three apologized for their actions and thanked Trump for his role in securing their release, which occurred while the president was traveling in Asia.

The trio isn’t allowed to suit up, be on the bench for home games or travel with the team. Without them, No. 23 UCLA lost to Creighton on Monday night in the Hall of Fame Classic.

LaVar Ball is attempting to build an empire around the basketball skills of his three sons — Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo, LiAngelo and prep prospect LaMelo — and his own bombastic personality. He started an apparel company, Big Baller Brand, with shoes that retail for $ 500 or more, and he got in several plugs for his products during the CNN interview.


Sports – TIME

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Trump’s war of words with Lavar Ball

President Donald Trump has called Lavar Ball “very ungrateful” after the father of one of the UCLA players detained in China downplayed Trump’s role in the release of his son. CNN’s Boris Sanchez reports.


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Trump to LaVar Ball: ‘I should have left them in jail!’

President Donald Trump on Sunday shot back at Lavar Ball, the father of one of the UCLA basketball players arrested in China, for belittling the President’s role in the students’ release.


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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

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Donald Trump and LaVar Ball Really Do Deserve Each Other

At the start of this year, if you would have told me I’d be interviewing a China scholar about a deal in which President of the United States asks his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, for help to free three UCLA basketball players who’ve been held in a Chinese hotel for allegedly stealing sunglasses, I would have scoffed. If you said that one of those UCLA players was LiAngelo Ball, son of LaVar Ball — proprietor of $ 495 shoes, controversial and outspoken father of Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball — I would have laughed even harder.

Bet the under on that one, since I had to call up UCLA’s Shirley Wang Endowed Chair in US-China Relations & Communications, Min Zhou, to talk about LaVar Ball.

In hindsight, however, that LaVar Ball and Donald Trump would cross paths in the frenetic, utterly unpredictable 2017 news cycle was all but inevitable. Before returning home from a 12-day trip through Asia, President Trump on Tuesday confirmed that he asked President Xi, during Trump’s state visit to Beijing, to intervene on behalf of UCLA freshman basketball players Ball, Jalen Hill, and Cody Riley, who were arrested on shoplifting charges while in Hangzhou for UCLA’s opening game against Georgia Tech on Nov. 10. “They’re working on it right now,” Trump said. The players boarded a flight back to Los Angeles today.

“What they did was unfortunate,” Trump told reporters before leaving Manila and returning to Washington. Shoplifting penalties can vary greatly in China, but the players could have conceivably faced multiple years in jail.

Yes, Trump’s rescue of the Ball family is shrouded in symbolism. The President and LaVar Ball are classic carnival barkers who relish the media limelight. (Among LaVar Ball’s most outrageous statements: that Lonzo, the Lakers rookie, is the best player on the planet. He’s averaging 9.5 points per game, on an unseemly 31.3% shooting, for the 6-8 Lakers) They both appeared in WWE matches. They’re creations of our reality show world — while Trump had The Apprentice, Ball offers Ball In The Family on Facebook. They provoke strong reactions, positive and negative. Many people on social media have imagined Trump and Ball holding a joint press conference in the wake of the shoplifting charges. That would be quite a show.

This story, however, is more than an amusing sidelight. It does raise questions about selective justice. While the UCLA players go free, what about the human rights activists still imprisoned in China? “It’s easier for China to release American students than political dissidents,” says Zhou, the expert in China-U.S. relations, in a phone interview. “That’s a much more sensitive issue.”

The high-profile status of the UCLA players likely helped expedite their release. The Wall Street Journal noted that Detroit-native Wendell Brown, who was coaching a local American football team in China, is still in a Chinese jail after a September 2016 bar fight (he was charged with intentional assault).

China’s release of the basketball players carries diplomatic consequences as the world’s two largest economies haggle over trade and the North Korea nuclear threat. “It’s very important,” Zhou, a member of UCLA’s sociology department. “It’s a positive sign that the countries can work together.” The timing of the arrests helped the freshmen. Trump was also in China, on a state visit, when goodwill between countries generally ratchets up a level. Zhou’s happy China didn’t overtly use the detained students bargaining chips with the U.S. But don’t be surprised, she says, if China expects something in return down the road. “There’s still some sort of bargaining involved,” she says. “I’m doing you favor.”

Zhou’s thrilled that the students are returning home. “Kids make mistakes, and they should be given second chances,” she says.

Where does everyone go from here? UCLA coach Steve Alford will likely hand down some sort of suspension for his players. But at this rate, go ahead and expect LiAngelo Ball to hit the shot that sends UCLA to the Final Four, while his dad waves his Big Baller Brand kicks in the crowd. It’s November 2017. Anything goes.

 


Sports – TIME

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Watch LaVar Ball and Ice Cube Go Head-To-Head in a BIG3 Long Distance Shoot Out

For someone who previously claimed he could beat Michael Jordan in his prime, LaVar Ball lost out to Ice Cube in Sunday night’s BIG3 shootout contest at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles. The challenge was brought on after Ice Cube tweeted he would buy ten pairs of Big Baller Brand’s ZO2 sneakers (priced at $ 495 USD each) if he lost, to which Ball accepted this weekend. Claiming “you know I hit them shots with my eyes closed.” Unfortunately, Ball was unable to live up to his words. The video sees Ball and Cube shoot from the four-point markers between the three-point line and half-court, with Ice Cube winning 2-1 over the course of 90 seconds.

The BIG3 League returns to the road again with the next stop at Key Arena in Seattle on August 20.

For more sport-related news, Conor McGregor’s team released sparring footage proving beatdown of training partner.

Read more at Hypebeast.com


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Why criticizing LaVar Ball is a double-edged sword

As the dog days of summer wind down, where the only major sport on TV is regular-season baseball, LaVar Ball continues to dominate mainstream sports coverage. The most overexposed basketball father in American history has made headline after headline for his increasingly controversial antics. Since Lonzo Ball rose to prominence at UCLA (and then became…
Media | New York Post

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Michael Jordan: Could beat LaVar Ball with just one leg

Michael Jordan is quite sure he’d beat LaVar Ball in a game of one-on-one … even "if I was one-legged." Months after Ball made headlines by saying he "would kill" Jordan "back in my heyday," the Hall of Famer finally discussed Ball’s comments. "You got to understand the source. I think he played college, maybe?" Jordan told campers at his Flight School basketball camp Monday.?"He averaged 2.2 points a game. Really? "It doesn’t deserve a response, but I’m [going to] give it to you because you asked the question. I don’t think he could beat me if I was one-legged." Ball, the father of? Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball, fired the first shot in March. "I would just back [Jordan] in and lift him off the ground and call a foul every time he fouls me when I do a jump hook to the right or the left," Ball told USA Today Sports as to how he’d beat Jordan. "He cannot stop me one-on-one. He better make every shot ’cause he can’t go…
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