The Ball family has made quite a name for themselves this past year. Most people have recognized them for their basketball skills. There is Lamelo, who is 16 and plays at Chino Hills High school in California. Then there is Liangelo, who is 18 and was recently recruited to play for UCLA. Last is Lonzo, who is 19 and currently plays for the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Ball family first blew up when Lamelo scored 92 points in his high school basketball game as a sophomore.
Chino Hills played Los Osos on a Tuesday night and while Lamelo scored the 92 points by himself, he and his teammates combined for a 146-123, win.
There was much debate about why or how Lamelo went about scoring 92 points. At the beginning of the game, his teammates would just feed him the ball the whole time and let him shoot; he would play offense just about the whole time and rarely get back on defense. Then he would “cherry pick,” stand at the halfcourt line, and wait to receive the pass and score.
At one point in the game, Lamelo had three opponents marking him at once, and he still dribbled around them and found a way to score.
Lamelo received some hate because people thought he was playing cocky.
“I think he was just cherry picking…anybody could score 92 if they don’t play defense,” said junior Arnold Jenkins.
“Others have praised Lamelo for scoring 92 points in a high school game at 15 years old, no matter how he did it.
“I think Lamelo and Lonzo gone both be all stars,” Jenkins said. Their parents are Lavar and Tina Ball; and Lavar is the CEO and founder of a brand called the Big Baller Brand.
Back in May, The Big Baller Brand officially debuted Lonzo Ball’s first signature sneaker. Three months later, Lamelo debuted his signature sneaker. He would be the first high school basketball player to have his own signature shoe. This could affect Lamelo’s chance playing in the NBA, however. As long as he has his own shoe, he cannot represent his school’s uniforms or mascot and he cannot get paid.
If he was enrolled in college, then this would not be a problem with eligibility, but Lavar Ball said, “We’ll worry about it when we get there,” in a September 1 interview with ESPN.
This was such a big deal for the Big Baller Brand because at first, Lavar approached Nike, Adidas and Under Armor to license Big Baller Brand, but they turned him down. So Lavar decided to make his own shoes for his boys through The Big Baller Brand. The Big Baller Brand is founded by Lavar Ball.
It is rare to be one of the top three draft picks for the NBA and to not have a major shoe deal with Nike, Adidas or Under Armor.
Lavar Ball has caused quite a storm with the media and cannot stay out of headlines. He has called out different NBA stars like Michael Jordan and Lebron James, saying he wants to go one-on-one against them.
He also made an appearance on WWE with Lamelo and Lonzo. Lavar ended up losing his shirt during a debate with another wrestler.
He was also in several interviews with different media outlets like Fox and ESPN. Some would label Lavar as cocky or annoying. “At first, I didn’t really like the dad… but then after I understood his business and the way that he represents them, it’s like how any dad would,” said senior Braden Tucker.
Their father is keeping his family name in the headlines and getting the attention of people so they will not forget who the Ball brothers are or what the The Big Baller Brand is:a family-owned sports brand of T-shirts, shorts, hats, sandals, kids’ clothes and now shoes.
A youtube video describes how he came up with the brand’s signature BBB logo. “Each one of the B’s represents my boys,” Lavar says in the video. “The first ‘B’ is kind of fancy; it represents Melo. The second B is always a solid B, which is Gelo, the strong one. The open B, the last one, which is Lonzo, and you don’t know what he is going to do.”
Lonzo has four colorways coming out so far called the ZO2s: all black, all blue, all white and all red.
“I think it’s cool,” Jenkins said. “I’m about to order me a pair of shoes…just like the new ones Lonzo just came out with.” said Arnold Jenkins.
On September 22, Lonzo released pictures of the ZO2 Prime remix. He gave it a different style and is offering refunds for anyone who pre-ordered his original shoe. Lamelo just has one shoe so far and it is bright pink, snakeskin green and black.
Lonzo’s shoes are priced at $495 and Lamelo’s are $395.
“They cost too much for me,” Tucker said. “I don’t know if I would wear them. Maybe if I was gifted a pair I would wear them, but I’m not going to spend that much money on them.”.
Lavar told Ellen Degeneres in a September 14 interview: “If you’re not dedicated and disciplined enough to go do whatever to go get the shoes, you’re not a big baller. It’s not about you having enough money to be a big baller.”