Did Lavar Ball Ever Play in the NBA?

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Lavar Ball has made himself quite a polarizing figure during the drafting years of his sons Lonzo, Lamelo, and to a lesser extent, LiAngelo. He has said things to stir the pot, and who knows if he really meant it or not. Some of the stuff he said was about his basketball skills and how he could beat Michael Jordan 1-on-1. This leads to the question: Did Lavar Ball play in the NBA for him to be so confident? Or was everything just a ploy to get publicity?

Did LaVar Ball Make it to the NBADid LaVar Ball Make it to the NBA?

The straight answer is, no, LaVar Ball’s career did not include a stop in the NBA. He was not good enough to get looks in the NBA draft and did not receive any offers to play professionally. However, Ball’s sons, Lonzo, LiAngelo, and LaMelo, have all pursued careers in professional basketball and have gained notoriety for their father’s outspoken personality and promotional tactics.

Despite not playing in the NBA himself, Lavar Ball has become a prominent figure in the basketball world due to his involvement in his sons’ careers. He has gained a reputation for making bold claims and predictions about his sons’ abilities and has been heavily involved in their training and promotion. 

While his approach has been controversial at times, there is no denying that he has been successful at what he does. The Ball brothers in the NBA are either in the process of securing a massive contract or in the middle of one. Lamelo is set to make big money in next year’s offseason as a Restricted Free Agent, and while Lonzo has been injured for a while, he is in the middle of a four-year $80 million from the Chicago Bulls.

Did LaVar Ball Play Basketball in CollegeDid LaVar Ball Play Basketball in College?

If you thought Lavar Ball was knowledgeable in basketball, that’s because he is. He may not have played in the NBA, but he did make it as a varsity player in college. The elder Ball played college basketball for one year at Washington State University in 1987-88. He was a bench player for the team, averaging 2.2 points and 2.3 rebounds per game. Despite his limited playing time, Ball was known for his defensive skills and work ethic. 

After his freshman year, he transferred to Cal State Los Angeles, where he played Division II basketball for one season with his three brothers before giving up his playing career.

Going back in high school, Lavar showed great athletic potential as a two-sport guy. He was the quarterback on the football team and played on the hoops squad as well, playing the forward position. Lavar was not drafted into the National Football League, but he was good enough to make it to the practice teams of the Carolina Panthers and the New York Jets.

While LaVar Ball’s college basketball career was brief and unremarkable, he became a successful entrepreneur and sports personality. He is best known for his role as a sports parent, promoting his sons’ basketball careers and making headlines with controversial statements. 

Ball’s oldest son, Lonzo Ball, followed in his father’s footsteps and played college basketball at UCLA before being drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers in 2017. The youngest, Lamelo, took the NBL route in Australia before being drafted by the Charlotte Hornets in 2021.

In addition to his involvement in sports, LaVar Ball has also pursued business ventures. Lavar’s business included the creation of his own athletic apparel company, Big Baller Brand. 

What is LaVar Ball’s Connection to the NBAWhat is LaVar Ball’s Connection to the NBA?

LaVar Ball’s main connection to the NBA was through his sons, Lonzo and Lamelo. His middle son, LiAngelo, was not drafted in the NBA but was signed to play in the Summer League and training camp for some teams, including Oklahoma City and Detroit.

The NBA media gobbled up his wild claims about his sons that it was almost a circus and a standup comedy routine everytime he opened his mouth. LaVar once asserted Lonzo was better than Steph Curry and described his son as “Magic Johnson with a jumper.” 

On another occasion, he declared he would “kill” Michael Jordan if they ever played one-on-one because MJ was too small. Ball doubled down on this claim on ESPN First Take, arguing with Stephen A. Smith on live TV. 

LaVar Ball as a Successful BusinessmanLaVar Ball as a Successful Businessman

There is no doubting LaVar’s skills as an instigator and a seller, and he’s putting them to good use (up for debate) for his sons and his businesses.

LaVar Ball found success in his ventures in sports apparel and entertainment. He gained widespread attention through his company, Big Baller Brand, which he founded in 2016. It was later revealed that Lonzo had the majority share of the company, with Lavar being a minority owner.

The company specializes in high-quality athletic apparel and footwear and has gained a significant following among basketball fans and athletes. LaVar Ball’s marketing strategy and promotional efforts for the company, which include his outspoken personality and appearances in sports media, have also contributed to its success. 

The company’s shoes, called the ZO2, faced backlash as mediocre, overpriced pairs. They retailed at $495 and were shipped at a much later date. 

In addition to Big Baller Brand, LaVar Ball has also made a name for himself in the entertainment industry. He has appeared on various television shows and reality series, including “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” and “Lip Sync Battle.” LaVar Ball’s success as a businessman and entertainer has earned him a significant following and made him a recognizable figure in popular culture.

Ball also secured a reality show from Facebook Live called “Ball in the Family.” In addition, LaVar also appeared on several episodes of the WWE, including a 2017 version of Monday Night Raw. During the show, Lavar engaged in a verbal altercation with wrestler The Miz, which ended in a chaotic scuffle involving other wrestlers.

Fans reacted differently to Lavar’s presence on WWE, with some complimenting his entertaining performance and others criticizing him for being a nuisance. Nonetheless, Lavar’s participation in WWE demonstrated his charm and ability to amuse a crowd, solidifying his status as a controversial character in sports.

Wrapping Things Up: Did LaVar Ball Ever Play in the NBA?

LaVar Ball has redirected attention to himself as one of the most controversial figures in the NBA. He was the one-man publicity crew for his sons, Lonzo, LiAngelo, and LaMelo, as they tried to make their way into the league. LaVar took it upon himself to train and prepare his sons for their NBA journey.

But, as you may have wondered, did Lavar Ball ever play in the NBA? No, he didn’t. He was a two-sport athlete in high school and played college ball at Washington State University. Despite not playing in the NBA himself, no one can fault him for caring for his sons, as both Lonzo and Lamelo made it to the NBA and secured massive deals for their respective teams.

We hope you enjoyed this post! If you did, be sure to check out our other basketball FAQ articles here.

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Hoops Addict

Hoops Addict was created to help basketball fans of all ages learn more about the sport and find the best basketball gear to improve their ability to hoop. He has been a huge basketball fan for decades, watching thousands of basketball games through the years to learn the ins and outs of the game.

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