While talent plays the majority of the part in getting drafted by an NBA team, getting signed to a Summer League roster isn't as much about earning a contract as it is about showing your stuff. LiAngelo Ball— the son of LaVar Ball and brother of Lakers' star Lonzo Ball— won't even get that chance, at least not in L.A. It is well known that dad LaVar wants his sons to play together, but after the NBA Draft on Thursday, the Los Angeles Lakers told LiAngelo Ball they won't sign him to their summer league team. Part of the reason appears to be LaVar and his reputation for being a distraction.
ESPN's Ramona Shelburne is reporting that a source said the decision has "more to it than basketball." Many have taken this to mean that LiAngelo's father, LaVar played a major role in that decision.
Outside of the obvious issues that come from having to deal with LaVar Ball, folks who are asking why the Lakers might make such a decision need look no further than the potential production difference between Lonzo and LiAngelo. Lonzo has already proven to be a strong player in the NBA averaging 10.2 points, 6.9 rebounds and 7.2 assists as a rookie. LiAngelo is not projected to be anywhere near that level so to have to take no the headache that is LaVar's constant need for media attention, his public outbursts, and his incessant need to provide issues for the Lakers organization is not worth doing twice.
This is not to suggest that the younger Ball brother won't get picked up by a team for a Summer League spot, thus getting a chance to show his skills alongside other players trying to earn an NBA spot. He just won't be doing so with the Lakers and he definitely won't be playing alongside his brother Lonzo unless Lonzo is shipped out in an effort to acquire LeBron James.