LiAngelo and LaMelo Won't Necessarily Have A Ball Playing Overseas
Former Lithuanian League basketball player Ben Brust, called the Ball brothers moving to Lithuania a "disaster waiting to happen." The younger brothers of LA Lakers rookie, Lonzo Ball, both signed one-year contracts with Vytautas Prienai in the Lithuanian first division. According to their father LaVar, the move wasn’t motivated by money but rather the opportunity for his sons to play on the same team.
Both boys have been pulled out of a traditional education system by their father to focus more on basketball. LaMelo (16) was excited about the change of pace in his schooling.
"I can spend all my time now and dedication into it instead of going to school and doing book work," LaMelo Ball told ESPN.
*Face palm* Listen I'm not going to dive too deep into this, but athletes on any level and from any background NEED TO FOCUS ON SCHOOL AND EXPANDING THEIR KNOWLEDGE!!
I'm not wishing anything bad on the boy, but career ending injures do happen. School and finding a passion outside of basketball will be an amazing Plan B.
After some legal hiccups, LaVar Ball, pulled his son LiAngelo (19) from UCLA making him eligible to play overseas basketball as well.
LiAngelo and LaMelo, may have created an image for themselves on and off the court, but this move can have several effects on the young players.
Here are some things the brothers will have to tackle:
Lithuania is NOT Chino Hills, California:
The family's antics may be right for Cali, but can they fit into the culture of a small Lithuanian town? Can they communicate with a coach who may barely speak any English? Unless the boys are super great at picking up languages, it'll hard for them to communicate with coaches without a translator. It may start off with not understanding certain plays but the language barrier could go on to effect playing time.
International Ball Is Scrappy AF:
With talking to my friends who play overseas basketball and working basketball productions during the 2016 Rio Olympics I can confidently say that international play is VERY different from what we see in the NBA. It's a different level of physical play that I don't think these boys are ready to face day in and day out.
They'll Be Playing With and Against Grown A** Men:
It's true, if you want to be the best, you must play with and against the best. Keeping seniority in mind, this can effect the boys playing time and their attitudes. LaMelo is used to being the go to guy for scoring, but now the boys may have to take on lesser or more defensively driven roles while playing with men. Also do you think these men will allow privileged teens to take their spots without a fight? Yeah, didn't think so.
It's Happening Whether We Like It Or Not:
His family name aside, LiAngelo Ball is not getting the same attention his brother Lonzo did as far as his chances in the NBA. On the other hand, baby brother LeMelo does draw attention. He's quick to take shots but is shaky on the defensive end. Plus, he's 16.
It'll be interesting to see how there brothers play on the court together. If that that even happens.