In news that is shocking to no one who even remotely watches basketball, the NBA draft has come and gone, and LiAngelo Ball—the middle Ball child, the one who doesn’t have the height of older brother Lonzo or the potential of younger brother LaMelo—has gone undrafted.
The only person who might actually have been shocked to learn that no team wanted to take a chance on LiAngelo was his father, LaVar, who now claims that the same son who was going to be drafted will “come in the back door as a free agent,” TMZ Sports reports.
To say that it has been a tumultuous ride for LiAngelo Ball would be an understatement.
The middle Ball child caused an international incident in November 2017 when he and two other UCLA teammates reportedly stole a pair of Louis Vuitton sunglasses during a goodwill trip to China. LiAngelo and fellow freshmen Cody Riley and Jalen Hill were suspended from the team. That’s when Big Baller LaVar Ball stepped in and pulled his son out of UCLA altogether.
What then transpired might have been one of the biggest dog and pony shows that amounted to nothing. Big Baller Sr. would go on to war with the president of the United States over whether the Ball family owed the Trump administration a thank-you for helping to get LiAngelo sent home from China (turns out that Trump had very little to nothing to do with LiAngelo’s release), and LaVar took both his sons LiAngelo and LaMelo to Lithuania to play professional basketball.
Well, this also turned out to be a bust, as neither boy even played against top Lithuanian competition, and neither one of them fared well, with LiAngelo reportedly shooting a dismal 24.3 percent from behind the arc and averaging fewer than 13 points having only played in 14 games.
The Ball boys’ time in Lithuania would be cut short after Big Baller LaVar didn’t get along with the coach of the team and pulled both the boys off the squad before the season was over.
And it’s safe to say that the NBA has probably reached its breaking point with the Balls, as rumor has it that Lonzo is currently being shopped as possible trade bait to bring San Antonio Spurs superstar Kawhi Leonard to the Los Angeles Lakers. How long do you think Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will put up with LaVar’s antics should this trade go through?
Nevertheless, LaVar debuted his JBA League to a sparse crowd the same night as the NBA draft, and guess who was in attendance? Yep, LiAngelo Ball. He knew he wasn’t getting drafted, just like the rest of us.
But has any of this deterred Big Baller Sr. from believing in his children’s talents? Of course not.
LaVar was as boastful as ever, telling TMZ Sports, “Somebody will take all three of my boys, and whoever do, guess what? Championship.”