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‘This Isn’t Entertainment Basketball’: Do Ball Brothers Have a Future Overseas?

Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

TEL AVIV, ISRAEL — Lonzo Ball’s agent and Ball family representative, Harrison Gaines, has put out word to international basketball organizations around Europe that Lonzo’s highly publicized brothers, LiAngelo Ball, 19, and LaMelo Ball, 16, are looking for destinations to play professionally, but the effort has most credible European general managers rolling their eyes.

Earlier this week, LiAngelo, on an indefinite suspension at UCLA after his recent arrest in China for shoplifting while the Bruins were there to play an exhibition, was taken out of school by his father, LaVar. The goal was to shop his sons to international clubs to prep them for the NBA draft.

No NBA scouts B/R reached, however, felt LiAngelo would garner interest in the league, but the bar is lower abroad. A team may decide to take a chance for the global exposure that comes with being in the LaVar Ball sphere.

But it may not be easy to find a fit. Most European club executives with whom B/R spoke want nothing to do with the Balls, simply because neither son comes with a proven track record. Francesc Solana, general manager of Spanish club MoraBanc Andorra, and a regular at the annual NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, was approached by the Ball family this week but remains skeptical of their intentions and credentials.

“LiAngelo and LaMelo were offered to our team, both kids, looking for a deal in Europe. Money isn’t an issue to them, but they have zero experience, so it’s difficult to take them seriously,” Solana said. “I don’t know what to do with the dad, LaVar Ball (laughs). This isn’t a good or normal situation; I don’t like it, we are not going to sign them.”

Indeed, the promotional skills LaVar has used in making the family

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