To hear LaVar Ball tell it, he taught his kids how to be the best basketball players in the world.
Cynics might say he should have focused his efforts on teaching his boys about things like the dangers of shoplifting.
It also sounds like he failed to teach them about brand loyalty.
Last week, LiAngelo Ball went unchosen in the NBA draft, despite working out for teams like the Lakers and Warriors.
Seemingly at a career crossroads at the ripe old age of 19, LiAngelo Ball not only announced that he won’t be playing in the Junior Basketball Association — the league his father founded — he also slammed it in the process.
The former (sort of) UCLA player told nicekicks.com that he’s too good for the JBA.
“Right now, I’m taking it day by day,” Ball said. “I’ll be willing to play in the G-League and get moved up from there. That’s an option. I’m not going to play in the JBA. I feel like that’s taking a step back for me. If I have to play in the G-League then that’s what it’s going to be. I’m not running away from the work.”
Pretty bold words for a guy who no NBA team is signing even for their summer league, and who has yet to play in anything higher than a Lithuanian “B” league.
It was in that league, Ball said, that he learned about taking his game seriously.
“I just saw that I have to go into the game with a high level of focus and be ready to go my hardest every time I step on the floor because it’s no joke over there,” he said. “If you’re messing around, they can fire you. That’s the biggest thing I learned and I brought that mentality back here.”
Ball played 15 games in Lithuania, averaging 12.9 points and 3.1 rebounds per game.
While LiAngelo Ball, his younger brother LaMelo — who may be the best of the three Ball brothers — played in the JBA opener, and not surprisingly, dominated.
Despite playing before thousands of empty seats, LaVar Ball insisted he was happy with the first weekend of play of his new league.
Apparently, that excitement doesn’t carry over to each member of his family.
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