- The Washington Times
Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Has there ever been anyone in sports more intent on getting his or her way than LaVar Ball?

The patriarch of the Ball family told a Lithuanian basketball reporter that he wants his three sons to play for the same NBA team — if not with the Los Angeles Lakers, then somewhere else.


Here’s what Ball had to say about the future for his middle son LiAngelo and youngest son LaMelo:

“If they don’t take Gelo this year, I bring Gelo here (Lithuania) to play with Melo for two years. Lonzo will be on his third year (of his rookie contract), and I want to let every NBA team know that Lonzo is not going to re-sign with the Lakers but will go to any team that will take all of my three boys. That’s my plan.”

That’s his plan, huh? It’s a far cry from last summer, when Ball declared he didn’t want the Philadelphia 76ers to select his son No. 1 overall, favoring the Lakers at No. 2.

Lonzo Ball’s rookie deal, like all NBA first-round rookie deals, is for four seasons with team options for the third and fourth seasons. He doesn’t have a player option. LaMelo Ball is eligible for the draft in 2020, so Lonzo hypothetically would join his brothers a year after that (unless the Lakers got so fed up with this circus that they didn’t pick up his team option).

Lost in the middle of all this is LiAngelo, considered the least talented NBA prospect of the trio. He is actually the fulcrum on which this situation pivots, because if the Lakers don’t bite and sign him next offseason when he is eligible to join the league, his father will keep him away from the United States for two more years. LaVar is even negotiating LiAngelo’s contract already, saying the middle son will play for a mere $1 million over three years.

Will an NBA team give in and try this stunt out, or will everyone be over this family by then? Time will tell.


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