“As the Ball Family Turns” is the worst soap opera this side of whatever ABC, CBS and NBC are still showing at one in the afternoon, and there is a new chapter in this unnerving saga as LaVar pulled Gelo out of UCLA because he and they disagreed on the severity of LiAngelo’s shoplifting induced suspension.
There was already this nugget from the great Woj on how no NBA GM thinks LiAngelo is an NBA player:
Ex-UCLA freshman LiAngelo Ball has no chance that he'll be drafted in June — and that was true before his shoplifting incident in China. "He's not on any of our scouting lists — even the extended lists," one GM told ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) December 4, 2017
And after LaMelo was pulled out of Chino Hills High earlier this year by LaVar, it seems that the next step for the younger Ball brothers is to play in Europe to get them ready for the NBA.
Per overseas reports, Harrison Gaines, agent for LaMelo, Liangelo Ball, has begun reaching out to teams overseas to gauge interest in a potential partnership for his two players.
— JD Shaw (@JShawNBA) December 6, 2017
Not only is it notable that they may have to be a package deal, a la Henrik and Daniel Sedin (at least we can tell these Ball brothers apart), but that the process has already begun to gauge interest in them from teams in Europe and Asia, though probably not China. Because of their notoriety, it may be a good business decision to sign the two, even if it’s not the best basketball decision, but one team from Lithuania has already said “thanks, but no thanks” to the circus.
Lithuanian team Lietkabelis Panevezys has said no in such a fantastic and petty way: their coach, Arturs Stalberg said in essence that he’d love to sign the Balls, but just not to play basketball.
We are all Lietkabelis Panevezys fans from now on… Hint: Arturs Stalbergs is the coach of the team… pic.twitter.com/bVNza5Xuyh
— Yannis Psarakis (@YPsar) December 5, 2017
“Yes, we have openings at the security staff because they have experience in this field” is the best put down on the Ball family anyone has thrown yet, and it comes from a Lithuanian basketball team you’ve never heard of until reading this story. Lietkabelis Panevezys, the two time champs of the Lithuanian league in 1985 and 1988, and the runners-up last year, doesn’t want the Ball brothers to help them get over the top on the court, but off the court, why not?
LiAngelo isn’t playing anywhere now as it seems mid-major programs aren’t biting, LaMelo isn’t playing anything other than AAU ball right now if that, so it seems their immediate future is playing professionally somewhere.
But as of now, it’s not going to be in Panevėžys, the fifth largest city in Lithuania. And I bet they’re probably thrilled.