Even if you're tired of Lavar Ball's personality or the price of the merchandise he's selling, there's something endearing about him taking on the sneaker establishment. Players only have a few legitimate options for shoe deals when they enter the NBA, and there's nothing wrong with he and Lonzo Ball fighting to get what they feel is "fair" value for his services. Any parent or young professional would do the same.
But one area where the elder Ball seems most delusional is in his public insistence his son will play for the Lakers at the start of his career. He doubled down on the idea again on Monday, telling ESPN's Ramona Shelburne he's going to speak his wishes into existence.
"Oh, he's going to be a Laker," said LaVar. "I'm going to keep talking about it until it happens."
Before dreams of his son in purple and gold get too vivid, Ball may want to take a gander at the Lakers' odds of retaining their 2017 first-round pick. Los Angeles owes their pick to the Philadelphia 76ers if it falls outside the top-three, which has a better than 50 percent chance of happening. The Lakers might not have a chance to even make a selection if ping pong balls don't bounce in their favor, which would make it nearly impossible for them to acquire Ball anytime in the near future.
LaVar certainly isn't the first parent to steer their child to a specific team, and wanting your son to stay close to home is understandable. But being too overzealous about it is not doing any favors to Lonzo. Teams aren't going to shy away from selecting Ball because of a supposed preference to play for the Lakers, and his new fanbase would have all the incentive in the world to badger him about it if he struggles at the next level. Pressure will already be high for a player expected to be selected in the top three, and this is one more thing Lonzo doesn't really need on his plate as a rookie.
Beyond his insistence on which team his son will play for, LaVar also told a ridiculous story about his background as a trainer and the impact it had on how he toilet trained his sons:
A personal trainer by trade, he's been shaping his own kids from sunrise to sundown since they were born, loading them up with food, swagger and tough love. He says he had them walking by the time they were 8 months and potty-trained by 10 months.
'I put a scarf under their arms and I just hold them up like a bungee cord so they get their balance,' he says. 'Nobody had Pampers on. I'd wake their ass up in the middle of the night, put them on the toilet. Their cold ass hit that seat, so it was like a mechanism. Cold ass, piss. Now go back to sleep.'
With a personality as domineering as LaVar's, it's almost a surprise he lets his boys piss by themselves as adults. He has been heavily involved in every step of his sons' lives—for better or worse—and is unlikely to stop influencing their future just because one of them is about to turn pro.
And in Lonzo Ball's case, he's reportedly quite happy to let his dad continue to do the talking. "I believe what he says," said Lonzo. "And I'm 100 percent behind it."