LaVar, rest of Ball fam­ily to star in re­al­ity show

Do­cuseries will air on Face­book Watch

USA TODAY US Edition - - SPORTS - Scott Glee­son

Move over, Kar­dashi­ans. The Ball fam­ily is step­ping into the re­al­ity spot­light — and do­ing it on Face­book, not the E! ca­ble chan­nel.

Los An­ge­les Lak­ers rookie point guard Lonzo Ball and his out­spo­ken fa­ther, LaVar Ball, star along­side the rest of the fam­ily in a re­al­ity do­cuseries, Ball in the Fam­ily.

In a pre­view for the show, set to pre­miere with the first two episodes on Face­book Watch on Thurs­day, the first ques­tion posed in a be­hind-the-set in­ter­view with Lonzo is one most of the coun­try also would like to know:

“What’s the deal with your dad?”

LaVar Ball has cat­a­pulted him­self into the public spot­light in a way no sports dads ever have thanks to out­landish com­ments that in­clude him say­ing he could beat Michael Jor­dan one-on-one. He also has used his Big Baller Brand to give Lonzo his own $495 shoe, the ZO2.

LaVar is heard in the pre­view say­ing, “My three boys (Lonzo, LaMelo and LiAn­gelo) are the best ballplay­ers I’ve ever seen in my en­tire life.”

“Fam­ily is ev­ery­thing to me,” LaVar adds in the pre­view. “I’ve al­ways told my boys, ‘You can make all the money in the world. But it’s not fun if you’re just by your­self.’ ”

LaVar and his wife, Tina Ball, serve as pro­duc­ers on the show. Tina’s re­cov­ery from a stroke, in which she strug­gled to speak for a pe­riod of time, is emo­tion­ally chron­i­cled in the se­ries.

“We wanted to give our fans an un­fil­tered look into our lives and show them a side of us that isn’t typ­i­cally seen,” LaVar said in a state­ment. “We have a big com­mu­nity of fans on Face­book, so we’re ex­cited our se­ries is go­ing to be on Watch. And who bet­ter to help us tell our story than Bu­nim/Mur­ray Pro­duc­tions.”

Bu­nim/Mur­ray Pro­duc­tions is best known for its part in Keep­ing Up with the Kar­dashi­ans.

The re­al­ity show falls in line with LaVar’s brand­ing tac­tics, but it’s un­clear how it will af­fect his three sons. There’s mas­sive pres­sure al­ready on Lonzo to re­store great­ness to the Lak­ers fran­chise. Team pres­i­dent of bas­ket­ball op­er­a­tions Magic John­son pre­vi­ously com­pared LaVar to Kris Jen­ner, say­ing: “The Kar­dashi­ans, we didn’t say that the mom (Jen­ner) was bad, and she made them a lot of money, right? She’s bragged on her daugh­ters, and I think it’s the same here.”

New episodes will be avail­able on Sundays be­gin­ning Sept. 10.


Lonzo Ball, bot­tom, and his younger brother LaMelo will be fea­tured in their new fam­ily re­al­ity show “Ball in the Fam­ily.”

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