LaVar Ball Launches Big Shot at LeBron James, Drops Shannon Sharpe's Jaw


Parents love to lavish compliments and superlatives upon their kids, but what LaVar Ball said about son Lonzo borders on absurdity.

We haven’t heard much from LaVar in recent months other than him saying that he would rather Lonzo, who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, get traded to the Phoenix Suns instead of the New Orleans Pelicans.

But LaVar popped up on Fox Sports on Thursday morning, which also just happened to be the day of the NBA trade deadline. As expected, Ball talked up Lonzo as the greatest thing since sliced bread.

When “Undisputed” co-host Shannon Sharpe said Lonzo wasn’t the best player on the Lakers — you know, LeBron James’ team — Ball responded, “Are you crazy?”

“Are you saying Lonzo’s better than LeBron?” Sharpe asked in disbelief.

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“Yes,” LaVar replied.

“You lost me on that one,” co-host Skip Bayless said.

“LeBron’s getting older,” LaVar continued. “I’ll make ‘Zo better than LeBron if I’m coaching because I’m gonna let him loose.”

Do you think Lonzo Ball is more important to the Lakers than LeBron James?

If that wasn’t enough, LaVar apparently didn’t learn his lesson from Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, who, when jilted by James, guaranteed that his team would win a championship before LeBron won one with the Miami Heat.

LaVar made his own guarantee, saying the Lakers would never win another championship if they were to trade Lonzo.

“I guarantee it,” Ball said. “If they trade my son they will never get a championship. … LeBron James without Lonzo is not going to win a championship in LA. I guarantee that.”

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We won’t know for a while if LaVar’s guarantee will come true — the trade deadline came and went without Lonzo being moved.

Outside of making guarantees and saying his son was better than LeBron James, Ball also threw Lakers coach Luke Walton under the bus … again.

“It ain’t the players, it’s the coach,” he said. “If you don’t have the coach, you’re out of luck. So you can get as many players as you want, if you don’t have a system or you don’t understand what you’re getting ready to do, you’re not going to win. …

“With Lonzo not playing now, players you thought were good ain’t that good. It ain’t like this is new. The same thing happened (at UCLA). How many of those players do you hear about at UCLA right now? You don’t hear about none of those guys cause Lonzo’s not there to make them look as good as they are. Brandon Ingram’s struggling, (Josh) Hart’s struggling, (Kyle) Kuzma’s struggling. They’re all going to struggle if Lonzo ain’t in the picture.”

On that point, at least, he’s not totally off-base. The Lakers have a 25-22 record this year when Lonzo Ball plays. In the seven games he’s missed with an ankle injury, the team is 2-5.

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Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009.
Ross Kelly has been a sportswriter since 2009 and previously worked for ESPN, CBS and STATS Inc. A native of Louisiana, Ross now resides in Houston.
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