Is Big Baller Brand traveling unchartered waters of the NBA? Will Big Baller Brand be successful navigating these waters? Anybody following the game of basketball has heard of the Big Baller Brand or its creator LaVar Ball. LaVar Ball is the father of UCLA freshman sensation and potential top-five NBA lottery pick Lonzo Ball. The LaVar has two other great basketball playing sons who also will be attending UCLA in the near future. LaVar has created his own sports apparel company Big Baller Brand, with the understanding that his son, Lonzo will have endorsement deals laid at his feet LaVar goal is to have one of the major sneaker companies enter into a partnership with Big Baller Brand. He has mentioned a billion dollar deal, this is unlikely but what type deal if any would the Balls be able to get?

LaVar Ball is an outspoken individual, people may take offense to some of his comments but LaVar has created a frenzy of attention for him, his sons, and the Big Baller Brand Company. There are some who may not like LaVar’s comments or LaVar himself but he has been able to get himself and Lonzo on all the major sports television shows. I cannot remember a college player or the player’s parent ever having this much media attention around them, this is great marketing for the Ball family and all their endeavors.

Personally, I believe LaVar attempt to get a partnership deal with one of the major sports apparel or sneaker companies is pure genius. Everyone knows being a top pick in the NBA draft ensures endorsement deals, so why not get a deal that will secure your family’s financial stability for the foreseeable future. Building a successful company may last much longer than the kids pro basketball careers. He may not the billion dollars he mentioned but what will he get? Because companies know that they will have to approach them with an enticing offer. People assume that the Big Baller Brand only represents the Ball children but people have to remember there are two other players with NBA potential associated with Ball family. Suppose LaVar was able to get other top players to become part of the Big Baller Brand Company would this increase the company’s value. The public hears some of these outrageous amounts of money but you have to remember these deals are structured over several years. A billion dollars over a 20 year period is 50 million a year. Is 50 million a year excessive if he can provide five to ten NBA players to represent the brand?

Big Baller Brand is traveling these unchartered waters so it will be interesting to see the outcome. If LaVar is successful in acquiring a deal for his brand, no matter what the amount of the deal, this could change the way endorsements deal are done for all future players in all sports. Just imagine if five of the top ten players projected in this upcoming draft were to create their own sports apparel company, the major companies would have no choice but to enter into a partnership with players.

No matter how you may feel about LaVar Ball if he is successful, sports and endorsement may never be the same. Players in the future will have to thank Big Baller Brand for creating a pathway in these unchartered waters of the NBA.

My Beloved Knicks

I am a New Yorker at heart, I love all New York teams, Yankees, Giants, Mets, Nets, Jets, Rangers, Islanders but especially the New York Knicks. These past few seasons have been disappointing, but as a  New York Knick fan every summer you believe that the next season will be better.

This season in my opinion has been the worst season in New York Knick history, not terms of wins and loses but the culture of the Knicks is disappointing.

First the debacle with Charles Oakley, Oakley personified the Knicks of the 90’s his play and his attitude screamed New York. Tough, hardworking town with a chip on our shoulder. Then to be watching a game and see one of our legends and Knicks hero being surrounded by security and arrested. Some say that it was Oakley fault, he was yelling at Dolan and Dolan does like the criticism, but this is a man who loves the franchise more than most. So his criticism comes from the heart, he wants to see the Knicks back on the top of the NBA, who better to express this to than the person who is ultimately responsible for the rise or failures of the franchise. Oakley should be a welcomed person in the Garden and his advice should at least be heard. He has no financial gain attached to the success of the Knicks just a love for the team.

Then there is the Carmelo Anthony situation, I find it blatantly disrespectful how Melo is being treated by the franchise. For Phil Jackson to blame the losing season solely on Melo is cowardly at best, when does he take the blame. The only good thing that Phil has done since working for the New York Knicks is drafting Porzingis and I believe that was more of a Steve Mills decision than Phil.

People on social media are blaming it on Melo, talking about trade Melo, he is a ball stopper, he does not play defense, and he does not pass. If you really watch the New York Knicks Melo has made improvements in all these areas, but when they start losing it seems as though he loses faith. Everyone forgets the 52 win season, no one complained about Melo’s game then, but if you closely examine that season you will see what made a difference. Donnie Walsh great leadership in the front office, Mike Woodson good coaching, Jason Kidd and Rasheed Wallace veteran leadership in the locker room and on the court. Chauncey Billups said it best, Melo is at his best when playing with other good players. What happen after that 52 win season, Dolan happened, instead of trading for LA Marcus Aldridge like Walsh wanted to, Dolan wants the trade for Andrea Bargnani. And then let Walsh leave. Everyone knows what Melo does and that is get buckets, he shows up every night and gets buckets. People are talking because the Knicks won these last few games without Melo, the ball is moving, these are meaningless games, these games did not change the landscape of the playoff, and the opponents did not give the Knicks their best.

Now let’s discuss Phil Jackson, I know he has all the rings as a coach but he is not coaching the Knicks. When he won those championships he had 3 of the top 10 players of all time on his teams, he did not develop them into superstar players, and they were already great players when he started coaching them. He is trying to force the triangle, I get it the triangle was successful in the past but this is now a point guard dominated league. Point guards do not like playing in the triangle because it diminishes their effectiveness on the court. Name 1 all-star level point guard on a Phil Jackson championship team. The way he handled the situation with Melo is at best amateurish. His prize acquisition, Porzingis, does not like the way Phil has been handling Melo.

You have to ask yourself if you are a top tier free agent would you sign with Knicks after witnessing how their current and past stars are treated. I love the New York Knicks but if the Knicks decide to trade Melo then there needs to be complete house cleaning, meaning Phil has to go too.