The 2017 NBA Draft is just the beginning for these young prospects, patiently waiting upon the vindication of hearing commissioner Adam Silver call their name. Top prospects Lonzo Ball, Markelle Fultz and Josh Jackson all have been through a roller coaster ride, eager to join their newfound team and contribute immediately.
While teams interview each of these cusping stars, they also find out about their personal side, their personality, and their character. Each player has their own upbringing, with special cases as with the Ball family. Father LaVar, along with son Lonzo, have ventured off with the Big Baller Brand and have used this unforeseen amount of publicity to their advantage.
Lonzo recently released his first pair of signature shoes, with the Big Baller Brand taking off thanks to the controversy involved with the brand itself. Not that many have come into the NBA and have successfully publicized their own brand to stardom, with the lone example relating to none other than the great Michael Jordan.
During an interview with Brian Scalabrine at the SLAM x Foot Locker Draft Suite, Lonzo was asked about emulating Jordan’s success and stated that he looks up to him as a model of success:
“Of course. Definitely know what he has done for the game, for itself. I just look up to him.”
Jordan turned his shoes into a billion-dollar industry, pushing onward the shoe collectors and fashion icons towards his products. While Jordan’s play on the court elevated his stardom, his shoes also put forth another side of his business tactics to the world.
Any NBA player would hope to replicate half the success Jordan had, but Ball still places high expectations on himself. Ball paid respect to ‘Air Jordan,’ commending his as the best to ever play and that everyone enters the NBA chasing his image:
“He’s just the best player to ever play. Everybody plays to chase him, pretty much. Because everyone wants to be the best.”
As the interview progressed, Lonzo gave some insight with a rapid fire round of questions. During this segment, he stated that ‘Glory Road’ remains his favorite basketball movie, with ‘Coach Carter’ finishing as a close second. He also described the upcoming experience of the 2017 NBA Draft as ‘fun,’ anxious to get the process underway.
The Big Baller Brand and Ball family hope to mirror that brand success, even if LaVar Ball still believes he would have beaten Jordan one-on-one. While LaVar is outspoken, Lonzo remains quiet and humble. His personality is not that of a flashy Los Angeles lifestyle, which is an admirable feat for NBA scouts worried about the California product.