Los Angeles Lakers guard Lonzo Ball’s NBA debut probably didn’t go quite as he hoped. While the highly-regarded rookie did manage to grab nine rebounds against the Clippers, the most by a rookie guard in their first game since Brandon Jennings, Ball only scored 3 points.
It’s hard to find a positive in 1-6 shooting, but on the bright side for Ball that’s still more than his father would score against NBA players, at least according to 50 anonymous players polled by ESPN. 87 percent of those pros told ESPN that despite his braggadocio about being better than Michael Jordan, LaVar would not be able to score a single point on them in a game of one-on-one. Or, as one player put it, via ESPN:
“He’d have negative points. he’d put one in his own basket.” — Eighth-year NBA forward
But while those players don’t have much faith in LaVar’s skills on the court, they have significantly more in his business acumen off of it.
The elder Ball certainly has made headlines since his son gained national attention, and 79 percent of the players polled said LaVar was a “master strategist,” while just nine percent thought he was a “buffoon.” The remaining 12 percent voted “both.”
Those that didn’t think LaVar was a buffoon were represented in the results of ESPN’s poll regarding the Big Baller Brand merchandise the family has used those headlines to sell, with 82 percent of the players ESPN polled calling the brand “legit.” The remaining 18 percent called the brand a “joke.”
Whether or not the Balls’ bold, braggadocio-centric business strategy ultimately works out is unknown, but it’s at the very least caught the attention of the rest of the NBA, and it will be interesting to see if any players that aren’t members of the family ultimately sign on to endorse the brand.