Lonzo Ball has had a disappointing start to his first season in the NBA. The freshman superstar from UCLA has played in games where he nearly ventured to capture a triple double, but unfortunately has had poor games where he was very inconsistent and didn’t perform well at all. It's no secret many NBA players have relished at the opportunity to face him because of his father Lavar Ball's outrageous comments. It has been a difficult time for Ball to adjust to the NBA. The game is certainly much harder than what he faced at the collegiate level, and it is going to take some time for Ball to really develop as an NBA player. Not to mention he lost two of his teammates in Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr to Cleveland, which is always tough for a rookie. Ball’s season has not only been plagued with poor play on the court, but he has also been injured for most of the season. We all know he is a more than capable passer, evident from his 7.9 assists per game at UCLA, but again it is going to take some time for Ball to develop his overall game.
However, Ball is not all out of luck during his rough start with the Los Angeles Lakers. He has a family who loves and supports him, and has a beautiful girlfriend in Denise Garcia. Although Ball likes to keep his relationship with Garcia under the radar, it has been exploited and many people know about it now. With these things in mind, lets take a look at 15 things you didn’t now about Lonzo Ball and Denise Garcia’s relationship.
15 Their first meeting was nothing special
Lets first start with how they met. The two have been dating ever since they met at Chino Hills High School in southern California. Garcia was captain of the soccer team who led the team to several conference titles, and Ball was the star on the basketball tea and future number one recruit to commit to UCLA. The two have shared a great love for athletics as Ball has continued professional basketball for the Los Angeles Lakers, and Garcia has played soccer for UC Riverside where she continues to work towards her college degree. Ball was a freshman and Garcia was a Junior when they first met and they began dating the following year.
The relationship progressed quickly and soon the were inseparable. "From the very first moment I saw him I knew he was special. Without knowing his name or watching him play, all I cared about was that fact that he caught my eye and had my attention." Garcia says, though he was the number one high school basketball player in the country.”
14 Denise was Lonzo’s high school prom date
The couple went to their high school Senior Prom together. In this picture we see Ball wearing a black tux with a red vest while Garcia rocked a sequin strapless gown. We also see both of them with their phones out which one may find quite comical given todays realm of social media and technology. Although both Ball and Garcia seem like people of humble and mature nature, technology always has its way of intervening a situation.
One of the many comments that take a shot at Ball says “Wow, he was ugly back then, lucky he’s 6’8.” Although Ball may have had a poor appearance to some, he certainly didn’t to his girlfriend. And that just being one of the may reasons why they went to prom together.
13 Denise was with the Ball family when the Lakers won the no.2 pick
Garcia could be seen by Ball’s side as he’s watching the 2017 lottery to determine what teams would land the top picks for the NBA Draft. The Ball family had been vocal about voicing their opinions in wanting Lonzo to stay local and play for the Lakers.
Given his father's flamboyant and somewhat unfiltered personality heavy puts this decision well saying “I told him he was going to go to the Lakers. I’m going to speak it into existence. Boston is going to take Markelle Fultz. He’s a good player. I think he fits best with Boston. You can’t bring him to LA. He ain’t ready this. Only one person ready for this. It’s that Ball boy,” LaVar Ball told KCBS after the lottery was unveiled.
Although Ball’s family was on board with having him play for the Lakers, I’m sure it was a sigh of relief for Garcia as well for she is still close to him while attending UC Riverside.
12 Garcia has appeared on Ball In The Family
From the very first moment I saw him I knew he was special. Without knowing his name or watching him play, all I cared about was that fact that he caught my eye and had my attention. As impossible as it may seem, the Zo I know off the court is more incredible than who he is on the court. Personally, it will always be that way. Being by his side through it all, has been a blessing in itself. It brings me so much happiness to watch him do what he loves and no one deserves this opportunity more than he does. Congrats on this accomplishment, but we know you ain't done yet. It's time to takeover this next level and I'm ready to support you along the way💜💛
Garcia has been featured on “The Family Ball Show”. In one episode she was interviewed about her relationship with Lonzo Ball, and what that transition would be like for Ball going to the Lakers. She did not seem to voice much of a concern, however, for they would still be relatively close to each other given their new locations and new career opportunities.
In another one of “The Family Ball” episodes, Garcia was featured in a shooting contest with LiAngelo Balls girlfriend, Isabella Morris. In the video both females were captured shooting just very poorly, like awful. When I say neither of them could hit the broad sign of a barn, I mean it and more. Although they were both stars in their respective sport, Garcia should stick to soccer from now on.
11 They both had their squads in high school
It can be difficult for any couple to find friend groups in high school, let alone famous ones. However, it seems like this couple has certainly been able to make it work through their respective sports. Garcia’s Instagram is filled with pictures of her numerous gal pals on trips to Palm Springs and Disneyland, celebrating her birthday and even going on a spring break trip to Spain. This tight squad also consists of her friends on the Chino Hills soccer team as well as the UC Riverside team.
Garcia’s group was on the soccer field, whereas Ball’s friend group was more associated with his friends on the basketball court. He had his brothers in LiAngelo and LaMelo. And he had the rest of the guys as well.
10 They like to keep their relationship under the radar
It might seem surprising given his father Lavar’s brash nature, but Ball likes to keep things with his girlfriend Garcia relatively private. ESPN's Ramona Shelburne illustrates this well saying, “He’s [Lonzo Ball] quiet, except around his younger brothers or when he’s playing video games."
In general, his girlfriend Denise seems to be the one promoting their relationship more, as several videos postyed of the couple are set to music. Thankfully for Ball's teammates Lonzo doesn't seem to have the brash, outspoken nature of his father.
Ball or Garcia occasionally post pictures of them together on Instagram like this one. He also appears to have no issue of her posting pictures of the two, but for the most part Ball likes to stay out of the social media spotlight.
9 Their success in high school continued into college
Garcia was a stud playing soccer. As previously mentioned, Garcia was a four-year varsity soccer player at Chino Hills High School. She was a four year starter and team captain for the team from 2012-14. Garcia helped her team advance to the CIF semi finals in 2012, and Quarterfinals in 2013, her team won the Sierra League Championships. She was also a two-time second team All-League, named first team All-League in 2013 and Second Team in 2011 and 2012, and named Defensive MVP in 2012. For club soccer, she competed with Glendora FC (2005-08), League Champions (2006-07, 2009), Legends FC (2009-11, 2013-14), and Fram FC (2011-12). All of these accomplishments helped Garcia eventually play for UC Riverside where she is still pursuing her degree.
Ball certainly dominated on the basketball court as well, leading his time to the championship almost every year and fueling his run to the number one recruit to UCLA. He continued his dominant play at the collegiate level averaging about 14.7 PPG while dishing out nearly 7.9 APG en route to a number two overall pick to the Los Angeles Lakers. Both Ball and Garcia have without a doubt excelled in their respective sports, and their love for the game and each other is certainly evident of that.
8 They've taken “Baecations” together
Transitioning a relationship into a new chapter can be difficult for any couple, but it seems like these two have been able to make it work for the time being. The couple has also taken vacations, or as Garcia likes to call them “Baecations” to Hawaii for a nice getaway. I feel as though Ball could use another one of these, for he has had a rough start to his first season with the Lakers thus far.
Aside from Garcia’s travels with her gal pals and Ball’s frequent travel with his new squad, the couple really hasn't had that much time to travel together, and they haven’t seen each other that much. However, when they do travel its sure to be an exotic location like this one.
7 They have both suffered their fair share of injuries
Injuries can be a setback to any athletes career. And it seems like Garcia and Ball have both suffered their fair share of injuries during play. Garcia has suffered injuries like this one during one of her games in high school. And Ball has missed most of his first season with the Lakers due to injury as well. It seems like injuries are a common occurrence between these two. Both have had their fair share of injuries and it is good it hasn’t seemed to stem their progress too much, but nonetheless they have had them.
It will be interesting to see how Ball comes back in his second season, when he'll presumably be starting (and hopefully finishing) the season at full health. He'll certainly need to be healthy if he wants to bounce back.
6 They both have horrendous shooting forms
Okay, this is a shot more at Ball than it is Garcia, but Ball as I mentioned has certainly underperformed this season. He has been shooting just 31% from three, while just shooting 35% from the floor. Although his assists are on par with most starting PGs in the league at 7.1 per game, he is going to need to improve his jump shot if he wants to blossom into a star.
On the other hand, Garcia’s shot is not a pretty sight either. She was featured in Ball In The Family, a reality TV show hosted by Lonzo’s father Lavar. In one of the episodes we get to witness this horrible form, which unfortunately is something both these two have. She should probably get shooting pointers from someone else.
5 Garcia is a Rams fan
The couple has shown their appreciation for the NFL and other professional sports. Garcia is a huge college football and NFL fan, but the fact that she is a Rams fan- surprising. Both being a California native and going to school in the area, it doesn't come as a surprise they would like the local teams. Although the Rams fell short this year, they had been one of the NFL’s biggest surprises and have a very bright future. Here we see Garcia standing in front of a sign entitled “Suit up for Sunday” and she made it clear in her caption that she was pumped.
On the other hand, we don’t know who Ball likes as far as the NFL, but given his current setting, and that he grew up in the area, Ball would probably be a supporter of the Rams as well.
4 Garcia started college at Seattle University before transferring to UC Riverside
Before transferring to UC Riverside, Garcia was attending Seattle University where she also played on the soccer team. Seattle had a successful season, where they finished the season 15-4.
Garcia and her teammates made the NCAA Tournament writes heavy.com. Seattle defeated Washington State in the first round in double OT. Seattle would come up short against California in the second round. It would turn out to be her last match in Seattle. After the match, Garcia posted a photo with the team on Instagram with the following caption: “Is crazy how I used to watch the NCAA soccer tournament games on tv, thinking about how much I wish I was playing. To now, where I was able to be apart of it in Chapel Hill, fighting to make the round of 16. Today, the best team didn’t win but I have had an unforgettable journey as a freshman so s/o to my teammates,” Garcia wrote.
3 They both have a ton of followers on Instagram
Although Ball likes to keep this relationship with Garcia relatively private, their Instagram accounts certainly don’t reflect that. They both have a ton of followers on their Instagram accounts. Ball has over 4.4 million, while Garcia has 374,000 respectively. Although they don’t seem to have many pictures of them together, they have a lot of individual photos.
Most of Garcia’s photos include her and her gal pals, while Ball’s include photos of his teammates and Cari Champion. So although the couple tends to keep things private between them, seems like they aren’t too shy about posting pictures of themselves. It'll be interesting to see where Garcia's career takes her once she graduates and if her fame will ever grow closer to that of Lonzo's.
2 Lonzo might have been unfaithful?
There has been much controversy over this latest post by Ball about a month ago. Here we see Ball with another woman, which is extremely rare. There have been all sorts of rumors popping up, including that Ball and Garcia may be splitting up, with LaVar being convinced Garcia's only out for Lonzo's money. It seems like a ridiculous rumor, but nothing about LaVar Ball surprises us anymore. There is not much word on who this individual is or where the picture was taken, but given the rash comments it doesn’t seem like a good look for Ball. And one would have to question if there is a concern with the relationship moving forward.
There isn’t much word on Garcia’s response to this photo or what has transpired since then, but it will be interesting to see how things pan out.
1 They are expecting their first child
Recent news flurried from a multitude of sources have confirmed that Garcia is five months pregnant. It's now confirmed that they're having a baby girl! And I'm sure LaVar would be happy to welcome a new baller to the Ball family.
Transitioning a relationship into a new chapter like this can be difficult for any couple, especially these two given their different locations and current settings. It will be interesting to see how things play out given the couples silence on social media on this, but it is certainly eye catching nonetheless. And we’ll have to see how it plays out. Let's hope the rumors of Lonzo leaving Denise were just fabricated and they have a healthy life together with the new Baller.