By deciding to home-school his middle son instead of leaving him enrolled in his southern California high school, perennial father of the year LaVar Ball has thrown another monkey wrench into the traditional pre-collegiate system for prep school basketball players.
LaMelo Ball — the second-best point guard prospect and No. 7 player overall in his class — was expected to be pulled from his junior year at Chino Hills High School on Tuesday. The move was designed to allow his father to begin training him in preparation for his freshman year at UCLA in 2019, and , presumably, the NBA in 2020, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday afternoon.
In doing so, the elder Ball continued his assault on organized basketball, shaking up various aspects of the game via the most unorthodox, unexpected methods — and likely infuriating the NCAA in the process.
Say what you will about LaVar – that he’s a greedy, self-centered sexist and racist reliving his embellished glory days by exploiting his children’s talent to earn a paycheck – but so far the shrewd founder and CEO of Big Baller Brand has been nothing but spot-on with his calculated chess moves.
In addition to this latest development, below are four other ways LaVar has thumbed his nose at organized basketball and likely changed the game forever.
Snubbing Nike, Adidas and Under Armour: When his demand for a $1 billion licensing contract for Big Baller Brand wasn’t entertained in the least, LaVar uppped the ante to $3 billion. While no one bit at the bait, the gamble could very well could pay off if his oldest son and current Los Angeles Lakers starting point guard Lonzo Ball meets LaVar’s expectations of excellence – all while wearing his own signature Big Baller Brand sneakers.
Charging $495 for Lonzo’s sneakers: Known for being over the top, LaVar applied that same approach to the ZO2, Lonzo’s own Big Baller Brand sneakers. While there was an immediate outcry for the inflated price tag, there has been demand for the footwear from the likes of JAY-Z, who bought three pairs in part because That man has a vision of his own … Why wouldn’t I support him? “
Giving LaMelo his own signature sneaker in high school: Not to be outdone by his older brother, LaMelo made history when the hoops star got his own signature sneakers – a first for any high school player. While some worried the sneakers that retailed at $395 a pair could jeopardize the college eligibility of LaMelo – who already drives a Lamborghini — LaVar had a classic response: “NCAA ain’t going to tell me s—,” he told ESPN last month. “Because they’re not my boss.”
Negotiating a reality TV show on social media: The shameless self promoter inked a deal to film a reality TV show starring his own family. The show, “Ball in the Family,” debuted exclusively on Facebook in late August.