A few months back I told myself I would never write a post on LaVar Ball again. KSR fans begged for it, too. He’s an attention-seeking lunatic with one above-average NBA player for a son and two other mediocre talents with dreams of the NBA they will almost certainly never reach. (At least they have MyPlayer mode in NBA 2K video games.)
If it weren’t for Lonzo Ball potentially becoming a star NBA point guard in the distant future, LaVar would have no fame and zero voice. But here we are, and now we get to hear about his ability to beat Michael Jordan one-on-one, follow trips to Lithuania, the founding of the Junior Basketball Association (Big Baller League), and his other two sons’ futures as Los Angeles Lakers being spoken into existence, despite NBA executives laughing at LiAngelo’s attempt to make it in the league.
Ex-UCLA freshman LiAngelo Ball has no chance that he'll be drafted in June — and that was true before his shoplifting incident in China. "He's not on any of our scouting lists — even the extended lists," one GM told ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) December 4, 2017
So despite my best efforts to never have “LaVar Ball” in the title of another post, here we are. But this is a story you guys have to see.
Back in February of 2017, LaVar’s wife, Tina, suffered a major stroke that nearly ended her life. Doctors told her there was a strong chance she would die, but she managed to survive. Still, though, they said she’d be left in a “vegetative state” and would never walk again. Against all odds, she overcame and avoided each of them.
Though she still suffers from expressive aphasia, a condition that has left her without the ability to speak, it’s an incredibly inspiring story about her road to recovery.
And then you hear about LaVar’s role in the whole situation.
We already heard that the kids were not allowed to see their mother during the process and the father was out watching his sons play basketball during some of the most difficult times of the rehabilitation process.
LaVar still has not allowed his kids to see their sick mother due to the media attention it would bring, and cause brand sales to diminish,” a member of the Ball family told Armchair All-Americans.
And that’s not the half of it.
In an article published yesterday by the Washington Post, LaVar reportedly teased and tormented his wife about having a stroke and going through the rehab process. In his mind, it was no different than recovering from an injury in basketball.
The quotes from the article are absolutely despicable.
“I coach Tina, like, you know, on a tough basis the same way I do my boys,” LaVar says, and indeed he views his wife’s ailment as a new opportunity to tighten the emotional screws until something breaks down — the weakness or the person. “. . . You can solve a stroke. It just takes time.”
If, on the other side of the planet, Tina is recovering with puzzles and daily repetition, LaVar believes in a different approach. He says it was initially his idea to prohibit Tina from using a wheelchair, not explicitly as a challenge but because, he says, Tina would be “tearing up our house.”
Not allowed to use a wheelchair… Because it’d tear up the house. Are you kidding me?
He then teased her with being comfortable in the cool air conditioning in the house, saying he wasn’t going to wait all day for her and would be inside while she was “moving slow.”
Rather than slow his gait when they’d go to lunch in Chino Hills, he’d point out she’s “moving like an old-ass lady” because she uses a cane or advise Tina to “put your damn foot forward and walk!”
“Keep moving slow; I’m gonna be inside with the AC blowing,” he now recalls telling her. “[Shoot], I’m not waiting all day for you to walk across the street; you better get to moving.”
The best part of it all? He said it was God’s plan to “tuck her away” in the hospital for a while so he could finish what he was doing in the basketball world.
“The Lord said: I’m going to tuck her away in this hospital for a minute, LaVar, till you finish doing what you’re doing,” he says, going on to suggest that his wife’s affliction in no way disrupts their pursuit of success and that he never worried about her because, simply, he’s too lucky for his wife to die young.
“She’ll be a little — excuse my language — [messed] up, but she ain’t gonna die,” he says, and with a videographer maneuvering around the suite, it’s difficult to know whether LaVar truly believes what he’s saying or if it’s just good TV.
For the rest of the Washington Post article, take a look here.