UCLA’s top prospect Lonzo Ball won’t be signing with any of the top tier brands of basketball anytime soon. Most NBA players around this time meet with brands in talks to get a feel for the player and see if they’ll land a multi-million dollar endorsement deal. Unfortunately Lavar Ball, the outspoken father of Lonzo Ball, revealed today that Nike, adidas, and Under Armour showed no interested in signing the UCLA star.
adidas, Nike, and Under Armour had meetings with Lavar Ball regarding the families ‘Big Baller Brand’. Lavar pitched to them the idea of becoming partners to build the Baller brand, but none of the companies were having it. He also had a sneaker prototype ready to present as well. Despite all this, the brands had zero interest.
We’ve said from the beginning, we aren’t looking for an endorsement deal,” LaVar told ESPN. “We’re looking for co-branding, a true partner. But they’re not ready for that because they’re not used to that model. But hey, the taxi industry wasn’t ready for Uber, either.
It wasn’t long ago that Nike consultant George Raveling called Lavar, “the worst thing to happen to basketball in the last hundred years.” Lavar is persistent however to become their own entity. His point being was that what if LeBron James or Michael Jordan went off to do their own brand by themselves without the help of an existing brand? It is hard to deal with hypothetical scenarios, ,but the father does have a point. Problem with that is it has never happened. Even the greatest himself, Michael Jordan split from Nike in 1997, 12 years after his initial deal. And even then, Jordan Brand still falls under the Nike umbrella.
Just imagine how rich Tiger [Woods], Kobe [Bryant], Serena [Williams], [Michael] Jordan and LeBron [James] would have been if they dared to do their own thing,” LaVar said. “No one owned their own brand before they turned pro. We do, and I have three sons, so it’s that much more valuable.
So what now? Well Lavar is aiming to land a deal somewhere. If you can’t join them stateside, time to go overseas. Asian companies like Anta, Li-Ning, or Peak would be next in line. But the real question is, should they? Well for a start, Lavar Ball and his family of 3 sons need to find themselves a graphic design artist. Nobody in their right minds would want to partner up with the ‘Big Baller Brand’ as it looks like a start up from the 1990’s. It’s just not going to happen. Having $50 shirts and $60 hoodies is not a great idea if you haven’t even made the pro’s yet.
We can list so many other issues with the family, but we at Kicksologists don’t want to keep feeding the fire. Do remember that it is still April and the NBA off-season hasn’t started yet. The brands can still make offers to Lonzo Ball. Will father Lavar accept the deal? Lonzo is a grown adult and he has to make his own decisions, not the other way around. Hopefully one day he’ll realize that his dad could possibly cost him millions in the future if he doesn’t take action now. Yet his personality isn’t one to hold a signature model some day. If not, he better hope his game is good enough for the league.