Whether you love them, hate them, or fall somewhere in-between, the Ball family just can’t seem to stay out of the news.
Which explains why the internet exploded Tuesday afternoon after learning that middle child and often “forgotten son” of the family Li Angelo Ball had been arrested for shoplifting during a team trip to China.
Li Angelo, who was taken into police custody alongside fellow UCLA teammates Cody Riley and Jalen Hill, was released on bail Wednesday morning from a police station in Hangzhou, China. UCLA team representatives, and head coach Steve Alford, waited multiple hours before the players were released, and issued a statement saying that the three would not play against Georgia Tech in their upcoming game. As for the response of the nation’s most iconic outspoken sports dad, LaVar Ball declined to comment after being advised by legal counsel to avoid speaking on the subject.
Known for his wild antics and endorsements about his children, LaVar has openly challenged a variety of critics ranging from sports broadcasters to current professional athletes about the skill level he and his children possess. He has stated that he himself could beat Michael Jordan in a game of one-on-one, claimed that Lonzo is currently better than two-time most valuable player Steph Curry and has spent the majority of the early NBA season challenging opposing point guards like a school yard bully trying to get the last laugh.
While LaVar has been quick to the come to the defense of both Lonzo and LaMelo in the past, it’s comical that he has nothing to say when his middle son is arrested and detained in a foreign country. It Seemingly adds to the belief that his middle child is truly the “forgotten son” in his family. I am curious to see what LaVar has in store for all of us when he is finally ready to talk about the situation. He has become a pop culture phenomenon in the past twelve months, yet when the spotlight turns sour he suddenly decides to hit the eject button and hide behind his defense.
I guess time will tell what happens to Li Angelo Ball and his teammates as the situation moves forward. According to a variety of sources, if convicted he would face up to ten years in a federal prison for the crime, something that certainly wouldn’t be an ideal look for the family as they attempt to expand their newly popular Big Baller Brand to an Asian market in the coming months. A blunder like that may finally shut the mouth of America’s most self-absorbed and downright annoying father.
But most likely, we’ll find him on another sports network in the coming weeks, finding a way to fill our ears with whatever nonsense he decides to spew out next. After all, this is a man who has openly challenged the greatest basketball player of all time – what’s the Chinese legal system to him?