What We Can Learn From Lavar Ball

I have been watching UCLA sports for a little over 23 years, As a fan, I appreciate it when I see talented young players receive the opportunity to move to the next level in professional sports. I feel like there is something exciting to watch athletes achieve their childhood dreams.

Right now, there is a saga unfolding for one young athlete by the name of Lonzo Ball. Lonzo is a top tier basketball player who has high draft stock and great potential to be a solid player at the next level. However, his dad, LaVar Ball has been saying some outlandish things and challenging the status quo of the NBA system.

Lonzo Ball has statistics that demonstrate his ability to play the game well and lead his team deep into their season. Yet, some scouts and analysts suggest that his dad has had a negative effect on his stock. Some teams have shared that they are concerned his dad will be too involved and outspoken if he doesn’t feel his son is used appropriately (Lonzo Ball Concerns).

LaVar was a professional athlete himself. He wasn’t a star, but still had a contract for a practice squad in the NFL and some time in Europe (LaVAr Ball’s Career…kind of). He apparently didn’t leave a lasting impression.

Now, he is focused o his kid’s careers. He is trying to force their success. He is making calls for who they will play for and what they are worth. Unfortunately, his claims are pointing towards some hard times for his sons.

So, what can we learn from him?

In my opinion, it seems clear that he is living vicariously through his son and he is gaining the fame he longed for in his short lived career. He has heavy expectations for Lonzo and his basketball future. Is it fair? No. Is it unexpected? Nope.

If you are a parent, learn from LaVar. LaVar is not allowing Lonzo to be an adult. He is a parent that cannot step back and watch his son be successful. He wants to be in the spotlight just as much as his son, if not more.

Give your children space. Trust their ability to make decisions on their own. Don’t place unnecessary pressure on them. Don’t live your dreams through them.

I look at my son and, yes, I imagine him being a football player or talented baseball player. However, I will acknowledge that his success is based on his talent, not mine. I can teach him how to play, but he has to play. I can support and encourage, but he has to love what he does and be who God has created him to be.

LaVar, and parents like him, can, and most likely will, cause damage to their children’s future. According to the professionals, Lonzo will be losing money. Some suggest, he will lose endorsements. All because his dad can’t sit back and let his son do something great.

Our kids are a gift. We cannot allow our dreams for them to hinder their potential.

May we embrace our role as parents. May we celebrate our kid’s gifts and talents. May we allow our children to grow and be who they are meant to be.

Peace and blessings friends.

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4 thoughts on “What We Can Learn From Lavar Ball

  1. Excellent post…too bad the people who need to read and consider it the most…probably won’t. There seems to be a lot of genuine Christians in professional sports across the board now…and thanks to certain Christian athletes…faith can be expressed and shared openly (and thanks to some excellent Christian movies involving sports).

    Lonzo Ball looks like a really nice young man and has good sportsmanship…so I pray he gets drafted by the right team with good Christian role models that can help him cope with all of the fame and money…and to moderate his father’s input.

    I suppose this happens in many fields outside of professional sports…academia, music, the family business, the family careers of parents and relatives, music…sadly just a product of fallen human nature when apart from God’s leading and influence.

    God bless.

  2. While your points are good, they are very one sided. You can’t take away from him that he single handily built his sons. He’s a great father and a great trainer. He deserves a lot of credit. So he said crazy things… it’s not like Jordan or Curry is becoming smaller. Many of NBA stars unfortunately were born to fatherless homes. Here’s a new picture, a father that loves his kids and wife and has three very, very talented kids… so there’s even more to learn from LaVar Ball

    1. I hear what you’re saying, and I agree wholeheartedly. He is a father that loves his wife and kids. They are very talented. He is a great father and trainer. However, there is a point where parents need to step back and let their kids be who they are. He is cashing in as well. He is controlling his son’s future. He saying things that his son better live up to. If not, it doesn’t fall on his dad, but on him.

      Lonzo has great talent, but his dad just said, “Lonzo will lead the Lakers to the playoffs”. If that doesn’t happen, it will make Lonzo look like a failure and, his father will have to eat his words. I mainly wanted to focus on this:

      As parents we have to be wise on how much pressure we put on our kids to achieve our dreams.

      Thanks for your thoughts.

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