Lonzo Ball is heading to the NBA, but apparel companies continue to shy away from the future NBA player. You might say Lonzo has some daddy issues interfering with his future financial situation.
Outspoken father LaVar Ball says Nike, Under Armour and Adidas have all informed him they are not interested in working out any endorsement deals for Lonzo Ball at this time, according to a report from Darren Rovell of ESPN. Rovell also confirmed the decision from each apparel giant.
As talented as Lonzo Ball is, this is a rather unprecedented situation for a player expected to be selected high in the upcoming NBA Draft. There’s only one man to blame for that: LaVar Ball. From Rovell’s report:
“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.”
LaVar Ball walking into Sketchers offices pic.twitter.com/f132W6nZKc
— Brody Logan (@BrodyLogan) April 28, 2017
LaVar has made it known he is looking to arrange for a shoe deal valued at $1 billion to cover all three of his sons (two of whom will not turn pro for another few years). That is a price he has not been willing to budge from in hopes that a big footwear and apparel company may blink first.
So far, those companies are not willing to meet that price, nor should they. That is a ludicrous demand. And for a branding opportunity? The Big Baller Brand is nothing more than a startup. Sure, you can profit by getting in early with a startup company, but given LaVar’s outspoken nature to this point, you can understand why a big company may be nervous about doing business with the Big Baller Brand right away.
Wow, veteran Nike exec George Raveling on LaVar Ball: “The worst thing to happen to basketball in the last hundred years.” #sbjwcs
— Michael Smith (@SmittySBJSBD) April 20, 2017
Earlier this month, a Nike executive said LaVar Ball is the “worst thing to happen to basketball in the last hundred years.” Phil Knight may have left the door a bit more open to working with Ball but right now, Nike is staying away and nobody is nipping at the lure.
I have said this before and I will say this once more. Lonzo, if you are reading this, you need to find someone else to work out your endorsement deals instead of letting your father take the lead. He is only hurting your financial future right now, and the sooner you realize that and address it, the better off you will be.