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The media needs to stop putting a microphone in front of LaVar.
I thought this was behind us, but apparently, it isn’t.
LaVar Ball is back in the news. The dude just simply refuses to go away. Last year, I could have sworn that his 15 minutes of fame was finally over, but due to his antics and outlandish commentary, he’s back.
It’s exhausting, but LaVar is only part of the problem this time around, as some in this industry continue to pander to him, pouring more gasoline on a fire that needs to be eternally extinguished.
On Saturday, LaVar was up to his old antics as he proclaimed that the Los Angeles Lakers would regret trading away his son Lonzo, as he was a key piece in the team acquiring Anthony Davis. Because in LaVar’s mind, having all three of his sons on the roster would be the cure-all to end all the drama that has surrounded the franchise recently, and would once again make them a contender.
“I guarantee… it will be the worst move the Lakers ever did in their life and they will never win another championship. Guarantee it,” he told ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk.
And then Monday came, and things got even worse.
During an appearance on ESPN’s “First Take,” LaVar made yet another proclamation about one of his sons, and this time it would be that his youngest, LaMelo, was going to the be No. 1 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft.
“He’s that dude, No. 1,” he said.
A few hours later, LaMelo announced on ESPN’s “The Jump” that he was signing a two-year deal, with an NBA out clause, with the Illawarra Hawks of the Australian National Basketball League. It’s the best option for LaMelo given that LaVar all but eliminated his chances of playing college basketball after deciding to send him to Lithuania last year to play for BC Vytautas. And since LaMelo was represented by an agent and had his own sneaker line, the NCAA was never going to let him play a game on a college campus.
But the most alarming comment from LaVar on Monday had nothing to do with basketball, as he turned his attention to “First Take” host Molly Qerim, attempting to shoot his shot at her.
“You can switch gears with me anytime,” said LaVar to Qerim as she was attempting to steer the conversation to a different topic.
The comment didn’t go unnoticed, especially since LaVar is married, as is Qerim, to fellow ESPN personality Jalen Rose.
“Kudos to Molly Qerim for the professional way she handled LaVar Ball after his inappropriate comment. Maybe ESPN will have finally learned its lesson about putting him on TV,” tweeted Jemele Hill.
Hill’s comment prompted a response from another former ESPN colleague, Jeff Goodman, the man who was the first one to give LaVar a platform.
“He also said LiAngelo was an NBA player. … and the Lakers would win a title with Lonzo … and that the JBL would be successful. I take a lot of the blame early on, but enough is enough. No more air time,” wrote Goodman.
The moment brought back memories of when LaVar had an Adidas official remove the only female referee on the court during one of LaMelo’s games during the Summer of 2017 just because he didn’t like a call she made.
Despite Lonzo’s NBA career getting off to a rocky and injury-riddled start, and the debacle that was LiAngelo Ball and everything that came along with him getting kicked of UCLA’s team because he was caught shoplifting in China, LaMelo has a chance to be special, as some will argue that he’s the most talented player in the family.
Which is why it’s time for LaVar to play the background, eliminating all the potential distractions he could bring to his youngest son’s career.
And if that isn’t enough to keep him occupied, LaVar could spend his time trying to get back the $1.5 million that his former friend and business partner, Alan Foster, stole from Lonzo, causing the former No. 2 overall pick to sever all ties with Big Baller Brand.
“That’s why I covered the “BBB” on my arm. Because when I saw that, I saw him and that s**t just a made me…I was tight,” said Lonzo in the latest episode of HBO’s “The Shop.”
“Because when we looked at the transactions, the s**t didn’t start happening until my mom got sick, because she took care of all the money s**t. So, that’s what really hurt me.”
As I said, there is plenty enough for LaVar to do to keep him busy and away from the limelight.
And while I understand that writing about LaVar could be seen as “feeding the monster,” understand that this is less about giving him more notoriety, and more about pleading with the media to ignore him.
Because usually that’s the best way to deal with a spoiled brat that craves attention.