By the end of this year, everyone involved in the NBA in some form or fashion will have been asked for their thoughts on LaVar Ball’s constant claims of his sons’ greatness and how they’re going to dominate the NBA. Ball’s comments about his son Lonzo being better than Steph Curry ruffled some feathers in the league, and since then he’s doubled down by demanding $1 billion for a shoe contract and said he could take Michael Jordan in 1-on-1.
Charles Barkley has told him to shut up, and plenty of others have questioned whether he’s doing his kids any favors by hyping them up as much as he has. Warriors coach Steve Kerr was asked about what Ball has been doing during an ESPN Radio hit with “Waddle and Silvy” in Chicago. Kerr said he felt like Ball’s comments weren’t helping his kids, but he also understood that Ball is getting what he wanted, which is to make his family a constant story in the news (as transcribed by Sporting News).
“The fact that everybody keeps talking about him, he seems to be accomplishing whatever he’s trying to accomplish, because the things he says are so outlandish,” Kerr said. “But he keeps getting headlines, and I guess that’s what he wants.
“I don’t think it’s helping his kids,” Kerr continued. “I think it’d be better for them if they can just play and have fun and not have to hear that every day, but whatever. It’s all part of him.”
At this point, it’s clear Ball isn’t stopping and his kids insist that he’s always been like this so nothing has changed for them or how they focus. As Lonzo noted at UCLA’s media session prior to their first round game in the NCAA Tournament, LaVar is going to always be LaVar, he just has a camera in front of him now.
“He’s been like that my whole life,” Ball said. “It’s nothing new to me. He’s got a camera in front of his face now so y’all are seeing it for the first time. But, to be honest he probably thinks he can do that. He is bigger than him. That is his thinking process. He’s never going to change for the cameras. He’s been the same his whole life.”
So long as they can keep playing at a high level, LaVar Ball’s comments are relatively harmless. There won’t be a team that stays away from Lonzo in the draft, or in the future LiAngelo or LaMelo, just because LaVar won’t shut up about how he could beat Michael Jordan. That said, I can absolutely see a future in which a coach gets frustrated because LaVar is ripping them for not giving one of his sons enough playing time early in their careers. That’s not going to affect Lonzo’s or the others draft stock at all, but I can see it causing an unnecessary controversy at some point down the road.