Watch: LaVar Ball Faces Off Vs. The Miz On WWE Raw, Takes Off Shirt
The former college basketball and professional football star first entered the ring at Staples Center with the younger of his two sons, 15-year-old UCLA Bruins basketball recruit LaMelo Ball. Together, they pumped up the crowd by calling on them to cheer for LaVar’s older son and the Los Angeles Lakers’ newest member, 19-year-old UCLA point guard Lonzo Ball.
Lonzo Ball was selected second overall by the Lakers in Thursday’s NBA Draft, and Monday marked his first time stepping into Staples Center since then.
WWE shared the moment on Twitter:
— WWE (@WWE) June 27, 2017
WWE superstar The Miz then approached the Balls in the ring and said he could imagine a potential partnership between himself and the family’s athletic apparel company, Big Baller Brand.
LaVar did not seem to take this well, and decided to confront The Miz by yelling at him and angrily removing his BBB shirt. To promote the brand, mannequins wearing BBB gear lined the ring.
— WWE (@WWE) June 27, 2017
LaVar and The Miz did not ultimately fight each other, although Dean Ambrose represented the Ball family by donning a BBB shirt for his six-man tag-team match.
— WWE Universe (@WWEUniverse) June 27, 2017
The Miz responded by taking his frustration out on a BBB mannequin.
LaMelo made headlines for dropping a racial slur twice and the WWE afterwards released a statement to the LA Times to apologize on his behalf. The Times said the younger Ball son’s language was not scripted and did not reflect the values of the WWE brand.
The slur came when it seemed like LaVar and The Miz were about to face off. LaMelo could be heard screaming at his father “beat that n—- a—!” in the background.
Wrestling Observer Radio reported on Monday night’s episode that there was “chaos backstage” after the youngster uttered those unscripted words. According to F4WOnline, several notable WWE figures including Kevin Dunn and Vince McMahon “were very unhappy backstage” after hearing LaMelo’s epithet.
Here are some of the reactions to WWE’s invitation of the Balls from several sports journalists including FOXSports’ Nick Wright, UPROXX’s Bill Hanstock and CODWorldLeauge and Overwatch commentator Matt Morello:
We’ve got @thebig3, a shirtless Lavar Ball on WWE Raw & the NBA Awards. Not a bad sports night for late June.
— nick wright (@getnickwright) June 27, 2017
dog people hate lavar so much the STAPLES CENTER is booing THE LAKERS
— Bill Hanstock 🌹 (@sundownmotel) June 27, 2017
Not gunna lie, I’d watch Lavar on WWE every week
— Matt Morello (@MattMrX) June 27, 2017
That was so stupid and pure pro wrestling nonsense. Thank you, Vince. Thank you, Miz. Thank you, LaVar.
— Dave Schilling (@dave_schilling) June 27, 2017
Clearly, WWE fans and pundits have mixed opinions on LaVar Ball and his family. Guess we’ll have to wait and see if he makes another appearance on the wrestling circuit, whether it’s on Monday Night Raw or elsewhere.
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 22: LaVar Ball, father of Lonzo Ball, looks on during the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft at Barclays Center on June 22, 2017 in New York City.