I should begin this article by comparing LaVar Ball to my father, but I can’t because ... I don’t know that dude.
I definitely am not as familiar with LaVar Ball as apparently USA Today’s Nancy Armour is. Armour, in response to Ball’s announcement that he was switching his son LaMelo’s high school, declared Ball the “worst sports parent ever” for ... ummm... talking too loud?
LaVar Ball is a blowhard who does things his own way. He is brash, sometimes sexist and always loud. He says stupid shit, like when he bragged that he could beat Michael Jordan in basketball, or when he told Kristine Leahy to “stay in your lane.” I suspect that he either has a huge ego or loves the letter L so much, he gave all of his sons L names. Or maybe he’s French.
But a bad father? How, Nancy?
Maybe he’s a terrible parent because he raised his eldest son, Lonzo, to get a scholarship to one of the best colleges in the country. Perhaps Lonzo’s lack of a single off-the-court scandal is evidence of Ball’s poor parenting skills. The fact that the NBA rookie lives in one of the biggest media markets in the world, playing under the spotlight of one of the NBA’s most legendary franchises and has yet to take a single misstep makes LaVar Ball a shitty dad.
Sidenote: I have actually spoken with Lonzo Ball on the phone, and he was as respectful and well-mannered as any 19-year-old I have ever met. I asked him about his father, and Lonzo did not waver one bit in praising him.
One could call LaVar Ball lucky that he got one son into UCLA, but his middle son, LiAngelo, is a freshman at the school, and his youngest, LaMelo, is committed to playing there when he graduates. LaMelo is ranked as the seventh-best player in the Class of 2019 and played for the Big Baller AAU team founded and coached by his dad.
LaVar Ball also committed an act of low-key child abuse when he started a shoe company that could net billions by the time all three of his sons make it to the NBA.
Building a family empire—who does that? Terrible dads, apparently.
There is a long history of people calling out black fathers devoted to their children. Earl Woods was criticized for helicoptering over Tiger Woods, yet we saw what happened to Tiger after Earl passed. Serena and Venus’ father, Richard Williams, was criticized for years for his overbearing presence that was so repugnant it only created the greatest athlete in the history of sports. Disagree? Name a single athlete, male or female, who has dominated a sport at the highest level for 17 years. Too hard? Tell you what—I’ll make it easier for you: Name one who won a single championship with a whole-ass human being living inside them. I’ll wait.
But LaVar Ball is different. He’s not just a bad dad, he’s the “worst.” Ever.
I guess that’s the price he has to pay for deciding to spend more time with his son, and not trusting someone else (as if he doesn’t know what he’s doing). The absolute only thing LaVar Ball has ever done is talk shit to white people and ... well ... that’s about it.
I would vehemently call this writer’s declaration a tad bit racist-ish, but first, let me Google her to see how many of her sons are playing in the NBA. I’m sure she’s at least raised some black sons in America, given her vociferous proclamation and apparent expertise. Hold on ...
I couldn’t find anything. Maybe they’re in the NFL or something.
Look at that picture—don’t they look so oppressed, dressing however they want, smiling on their way to becoming millionaires? Anyway, here’s to the millions of black boys across America who wish they had a dad as devoted, loving, caring or even as present as the worst sports dad ever ...
... including me.
Read more at USA Today.