LaVar Ball Blames LaMelo Ball's 'Raggedy Shoes' for Injuries

LaVar takes a shot at Puma and LaMelo's MB signature line.

Man in neon shirt and baseball cap looking to the side at an event
David Jensen / Getty Images
Man in neon shirt and baseball cap looking to the side at an event

There have been lingering health issues surrounding both Lonzo and LaMelo Ball since the two brothers were drafted in the NBA in 2017 and 2020, respectively. It's been over two years since Lonzo has played a game, and just last week the Charlotte Hornets shut down LaMelo for the season, having only played in 22 games. Now LaVar Ball, their father, is sharing his opinion on the matter by pointing to the lack of conditioning in the league and LaMelo's Puma sneakers.

In a recent interview with CBS Sports, LaVar was asked about the current health status of Lonzo and LaMelo, saying, "Well, mentally, they got a strong mindset. They Balls. So they're going to come back. They're going to rehab. They're going to do their thing."

LaVar went on to say that the reasoning behind the brothers' ongoing health issues is due to the lack of conditioning in the NBA before directly pointing the blame at LaMelo's Puma MB signature basketball line. LaVar suggests that the MB sneakers are not made correctly for LaMelo and the reason he keeps hurting his ankles.

"They've been trained hard enough? No, no, no. Because you condition your body for running and jumping," LaVar said. "You've got to condition your legs. So that's why I always have my boys in them hills and running hard in them hills. That will make you run like a deer when you get on that court, so you won't be getting hurt. A lot of things have to do with them raggedy shoes that Melo will be wearing. Them shoes are not made the right way for him. That's why he keeps tweaking his ankle every single time."

LaMelo signed an endorsement deal with Puma in October 2020 and at the time of writing, he has released three signature sneakers with the German sportswear company, with a fourth model on the way. Prior to joining Puma, LaMelo, and his brother Lonzo, had signature sneakers with the Ball family brand, Big Baller Brand. Lonzo has most recently worn Nike.

Despite the ongoing on-court absences of Lonzo and LaMelo, LaVar does provide some much-needed hope, saying that both brothers will be back next season.

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