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With Lonzo Ball on the outs with his family’s Big Baller Brand, Nike linchpin and Los Angeles Lakers teammate LeBron James said Nike “would definitely” welcome Ball with open arms, according to Tania Ganguli of the Los Angeles Times.
Spoke to LeBron James last night about Lonzo Ball and the Nike rumors. He was coy about that, but really proud of Ball overall. "I love the fact that he's taking control of his sh–," James told me. "That's what was really, really dope to me." https://t.co/7lAPL9S4qS
— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) March 25, 2019
Ball, the second-year Lakers point guard who is out for the season with a left ankle injury, left Big Baller Brand after saying co-founder Alan Foster “is a convicted felon who used his access to my business and personal finances to enrich himself” for $1.5 million.
James, 34, said he is proud of the 21-year-old Ball for “taking command” of his situation.
“Whatever the kid decides to do, whatever brand he comes with next — if it’s with Nike obviously, we would welcome him,” James told Ganguli. “I would definitely welcome him. I love the kid regardless of what shoes he had on. But we shall see.”
James believes Ball’s parting of the ways with Big Baller Brand is about much more than his next shoe deal.
“I love the fact that he’s taking control of his [crap],” James said. “I mean, he’s, that’s what’s really, really dope to me. Once I saw that story I just seen a kid turning into a man. ‘This is my career and I’m taking this. I done had enough with — whatever. I done had enough. Whatever. If I’m not going to be successful, I’m not going to be successful on my terms.’ I saw a lot of that. We’ll see.”
James then added with a smile, “I mean, he plays well when he has on Nikes.”