Mr. LaVar Ball has been a father who has without question made his presence felt in the world of sports. He is a proven father and to be a father-force to be reckoned with it comes to his family and business. He is Bold and fearless about what he wants and believes and he doesn’t hesitate to speak his mind to any and everybody. And I do mean anybody. He has openly shared his views regarding his son, Lonzo Ball being better than Michael Jordan and Steph Curry before his son was even drafted to play in the NBA. He has been challenged by seasoned commentators such as Stephen A. Smith and Charles Barkley, regarding his (some would say) blasphemous statements and has held his own. He has also had to deal with strong adverse reactions by numerous sports professionals and has faced public ridicule about his demeanor and his attitude and yet still he remains unfazed.
In fact, regarding his son potentially being drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers, he reported that he didn’t need the advice of Kobe Bryant. He expressed that he wasn’t interested in patterning his son after the likes of anyone else. Many people believe that Mr. LaVar Ball’s behaviors and attitude would tarnish his son’s reputation and push business opportunities away even before his son gets to play in the NBA, however that has yet to be seen.
Mr. LaVar’s Ball boldness, self-confidence and outspokenness has been used to his advantage in his business endeavors. His business savviness not only highlights his impudent demands but indicates that he has a Brilliant mind for business. He is the co-founder of The Big Baller Brand with his wife. The Big Baller Brand sites itself as “lifestyle apparel founded on core family values” and is reportedly worth four million dollars. Mr. LaVar Ball indicated to the major apparel companies early on that he was not interested in getting an endorsement deal but rather a co-branding deal. This was certainly not what these big companies were used to. It was truly no surprise that The Big Baller Brand rejected several ten-million-dollar sneaker endorsement deals offered by major corporations such as Nike, Adidas and Under Armor.
After these companies failed to siege the opportunity to co-brand with the Baller family Mr. LaVar Ball had news for them all, the price tag for inking an endorsement deal with his Big Baller Brand just up to three-billion-dollars. Mr. LaVar Ball’s risky business practices and character has worked well for the marketing of his brand. He has appeared on major market programs such as WWE, First Take, Undisputed, ESPN and The Herd just to name a few. He has even gotten the attention of master marketing giant and NBA legend / Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, when the Big Baller Brand launched its sneakers priced at $495 a pair. Shaq wrote a hip-hop track dissing Mr. LaVar Ball nevertheless it only generated more attention and produced free advertising for the Big Baller Brand. While it is apparently evident, that his bold business practices will exacerbate any discontent that others have towards him, he is without question challenging the way business is done.
In the business world Mr. LaVar Ball may be described as a bit uncivilized or barbarous if you will because of his unwillingness to conform to the standard business practices. Truth being told major corporations and colleges have had a vice grip on the way business is done since the beginning. Although some have raised their voices to mention the obvious monopoly going on in collegiate and professional sports many are not willing to take a stand against these exploitative practices. Until now, there has been no real challenge to the business practices in sports entertainment. However, Mr. LaVar Ball is refusing to allow these big corporations push him around. He is just not willing to sit back and permit anyone to take advantage of him and his family. Some may believe that the Big Baller Brand are in over their heads challenging these corporations but Mr. LaVar Ball is willing to take them head on. He’s not trying to hear any one whether it’s a person or a corporation tell him anything regarding his family and if they do he’ll tell them like he told the Fox Network “Stay In Yo Lane” and I applaud his efforts to lead his family.
Beast of Burden
The term Beast of Burden normally refers to an animal being used to carry things, however when it comes to fatherhood, I use it to refer to Mr. LaVar Ball. There has been great speculation regarding the possible effects that his character and business practices will have on his son’s careers. His son’s when asked about their father’s ways of life simple say “that’s how he’s always been” and appears unfazed by it. Basketball Hall of Famer Ervin “Magic” Johnson was questioned if the Dad effect would hinder the Los Angeles Lakers from drafting Lonzo Ball. Magic Johnson responded, “Every player comes from a different family situation. It seems like LaVar has been extremely involved in Lonzo’s career and obviously he’s a polarizing guy, but on the terms of development it seems like it’s helped Lonzo” (M.B Washington Post). Magic Johnson seems to understand what research indicates regarding the impact of fathers being involved in the life of their children. Research reveal that fathers harbor the awesome responsibility of helping their children develop healthy socially and emotionally. Some may not realize it nor agree with me however Mr. LaVar Ball is carrying the load for responsible fatherhood and many fathers and families will reap the benefits.