Photo Credit: USA Today
If you haven’t heard the name LaVar Ball by now, you’re one of three things.
You simply do not care about sports (in which case you would not be reading this article).
You have been living under a rock for the past few months (in which case you would not have survived).
You were literally born yesterday (in which case you could not read at all).
The bottom line is, anyone who knows anything has heard about the loud-mouth father of ex-UCLA Bruins star point guard Lonzo Ball, LaVar. You’ve heard the insane, ridiculous and foolish quotes that he is now well-known for.
“If Charles [Barkley] thought like me, maybe he’d win a championship.”
“There’s been a lot of great players, and all of their sons are whack.”
“I’ll tell you right now, [Lonzo’s] better than Steph Curry to me.”
“Back in my heyday, I would kill Michael Jordan one-on-one.”
And that’s just scraping the tip of the iceberg.
Lonzo is a star that looks to have an amazing future ahead of him in the NBA, and he will likely be a top 3 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. In 36 games at UCLA, he averaged 14.6 points, 6.0 rebounds, and an NCAA-high 7.6 assists per game. But who exactly is his father, and how is he relevant? You don’t see Russell Westbrook’s father or James Harden’s father making fools of themselves trying to live their own dreams through their sons.
LaVar averaged just 2.2 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 1.0 assist per game over 26 games at the collegiate level with the Washington State Cougars in the 1987-1988 season. He is a NOBODY from a basketball perspective and is completely irrelevant when it comes to making comparisons of himself to Jordan and Barkley. He simply wants attention.
Don’t believe me? Have a look at these recently discovered “highlights” of him playing basketball. He is #8 on the red team.
Everyone knows by now that nothing he says can be taken seriously. LaVar himself knows that, and he knows that they know that. Everyone, LaVar included, knows Michael Jordan would obliterate him one-on-one…I mean, just watch the above video. Yet he continues spouting out more foolish quotes.
Why? Because what he also knows is that both the media and the public will continue to buy into what he says, be it for entertainment purposes or for hating purposes. No matter what you think of this guy, how bad he is for his three sons from an embarrassment standpoint or from a basketball standpoint, he is getting exactly what he wants for himself. Attention. And as a result of that attention, he has no problem selling his son’s new $495 ZO2 shoes as a part of his “Big Baller Brand”.
Every time someone says something nasty about him or makes an internet meme about him, that just encourages him to do more of what he’s been doing. Again, why? Because it all produces attention for him. It produces storylines for sports news outlets like ESPN to discuss, which they do EVERY TIME, and that gets him the publicity he so desires as a nobody in the basketball world, thus bringing in more cash.
Regardless of how you feel about LaVar Ball, know this. He is winning. With every nonsensical quote he speaks or ridiculous action he commits, he is winning. He is not as stupid as he seems. He has proven to be smart enough to manipulate everyone into thinking he is stupid so that he can experience this constant winning, and he has executed this strategy flawlessly over the past couple of months. And guess what? Both the media and the public are to blame for allowing it to happen because they are the ones that feed off of it.