LiAngelo Ball wants to play in the NBA, but not everyone is sure that he will be drafted. This did not prevent the 19-year-old from declaring his intention to challenge the June 21 draft.
Balls agent Harrison Gaines told ESPN on Tuesday that his client would join the draft and work for NBA teams. Gaines told Yahoo Sports that Ball would attend the Professional Basketball Combine at the IMG Academy in Florida in May.
LiAngelo, the younger brother of Lonzo Ball, who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers. LiAngelo played professionally in Lithuania, together with the youngest ball brother LaMelo.
Sports books doubt Ball’s chances
In December, shortly after he went to Europe to play with the Prienu Vytautas in the Lithuanian basketball league, Bovada gave him little chance of being selected by an NBA team and set the line to +2500 to draft and -1000 that he would not do it.
Ball told a Lithuanian TV station he expects to be on an NBA squad next year.
Many scouts have said that he is the least talented of the three Ball brothers and that the best he can hope for is to win a contract with a G-League squad, the NBA development organization.
Bleacher Report recently had a story stating that no NBA scout he spoke to said LiAngelo Ball would be drafted. Not a single Scout Bleacher report has come to the conclusion that Ball has a chance to play in the NBA soon, Jonathan Wasserman wrote.
But the odds have been cut to his draft odds. BetOnline adjusted the line to +240, which he would choose, and he would not -300.
One who believes he will be picked up is former NBA Allstar Paul Pierce. The future Hall of Famer told TMZ Sports that he liked his chances.
I think he has a good shot, man, said Pierce. I hope all Ball brothers make it to the league.
Father LaVar knows best
The ball patriarch, LaVar, pulled LiAngelo out of the UCLA program after the rookie was caught shoplifting on a trip to China with the Bruins in November. He was suspended by Coach Steve Alford indefinitely and left the university without ever playing a game.
LaVar announced that he also hunted his youngest son out of high school and sent them overseas to play professionally. He wanted to prepare her for careers in the NBA.
LiAngelo averaged 15.7 points in nine games with Vytautas, but LaVar orchestrated a game with a youth team to his son Draft Stock. One day after the announcement of the draft LiAngelo scored 72 points against younger and younger players.
It’s all part of a plan that LaVar hatched to have all three of his sons play for the Lakers. He told a Lithuanian journalist about his intentions.
“I want all my three guys to play for the Lakers,” Ball said. If they do not take Gelo this year, I’ll bring Gelo back here (Prienai in Lithuania) to play with Melo for two years. Lonzo will be in his third year, and I want to let every NBA team know that Lonzo will not sign with the Lakers, but will go to any team that’ll take all three of my boys. That’s my plan.