Big Baller Brand sneakers retailing at $495!

Well, it looks like you are going to have to be a “baller” in order to own a pair of Big Baller Brand sneakers. Lonzo Ball’s signature shoe, the ZO2 Prime, can now be purchased at bigballerbrand.com for $495. Wow! That price is crazy!

According to Slam Magazine, there is a limited ZO2 WET Autographs edition, which will come in a key-locked glass box with a floor mirror, LED lights and an autograph from Lonzo Ball. The cost? $995!

Who can afford these sneakers?

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Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas getting advice from Kobe

Isaiah Thomas did it all last night in game 2 against the Wizards. When they needed him the most(4th Qtr & OT), Thomas scored 29 of his career high 53 points, and he did it on his late sister Chyna’s 23rd birthday. Why has Thomas been playing so well? We may have found the reason. According to A. Sherrod Blakely, Thomas has been doing some film study with the “Mamba.” He has been getting support from Kobe Bryant since game 2 against the Bulls.

“He was going over my film with me, and teaching me things he looks at when he watches film. That’s probably been a big help for me,” Thomas said. 

Thomas said Bryant reached out to him after the death of his sister.

If he keeps playing like this, Thomas might need talk to Bryant all the time.

Isaiah Thomas drops 53 points; Boston takes 2-0 series lead

Isaiah Thomas is doing some amazing things in these playoffs. However, Tuesday’s performance was extra amazing. Thomas scored a career high 53 points on 18-33 from the field. He scored 29 points in 4th quarter and OT, as the Celtics beat the Wizards 129-119 in OT to take a 2-0 series lead. He did all this on his late sister Chyna’s 23rd birthday.  Meanwhile, for the Wizards, John Wall had 40 points! 

What an amazing run for Thomas and the Celtics. Boston has now won five straight games in these playoffs after losing the first two games to the Bulls. Thomas becomes the only player in Celtics’ history to score 50 points in the regular and postseason in the same season. Thomas falls one point short of the Celtics’ record for most points in a playoff game (Havlicek 54pts). It is amazing to see a little guy like Thomas put up these ridiculous numbers. It’s impossible to root against this guy, but this series is not over.

Expect the Wizards to play well in Washington!

Dwight Howard: ‘I came here(Atlanta) to win’

LeBron James went home, and won a championship in Cleveland. Dwight Howard went home, and the Hawks went out in the first-round.

“I didn’t come back here just to come back home. I came here to win,” Howard told reporters. Also, Howard was not happy with his role in Atlanta.

“I want to play. I want to be out on the floor. I want to make a difference. I want to make an impact, and I can’t do that on the bench.” Howard told reporters.

The 31-year-old Howard averaged only 8 ppg in the playoffs, and was not much a factor against the Wizards.

Howard signed a 3-year, 70.5 million dollar deal with the Hawks last summer. Atlanta might be stuck with him, so I guess they will have to make it work!

Matt Barnes on hanging out Utah: ‘There’s no nightlife in Utah’

The Utah Jazz are off to the second-round of the Playoffs after dispatching the Clippers in seven. Good news for them, but bad news for the Warriors; at least, when it comes to partying. When asked to compare the party scene in Utah to Los Angeles, Matt Barnes had this to say to ESPN

“No comparison. There’s no such thing, man. There’s no nightlife in Utah. Obviously, as players, you want to be able to have a little bit of a nightlife, but the main focus is winning games. Me personally, I want to get out there because I want to beat the Clippers. That’s my former team, and my kids are out there. But as far as nightlife, there’s no comparison to nightlife in Utah and L.A.”

Kevin Durant gave his take:

“I’m sure it’s probably clubs, but I’ve never been to one in Utah,” Kevin Durant told ESPN. 

Fortunately for the Warriors, they probably won’t have to be in Utah very long. Warriors will beat the Jazz in six. 

LeBron was offered 10 million by Reebok not to meet with other shoe companies

LeBron James gets it done in the world of business. His brand continues to grow because of smart business moves over the years. Maybe one of his better business moves happened before he entered the NBA. According to LeBron, when he was in high school, Reebok offered him 10 million dollars not to meet with the other show companies. Obviously, LeBron did not take the money, and would eventually sign with Nike. LeBron tells the story to UNINTERRUPTED’s series “Kneading Dough.”

“For some odd reason I started thinking. If he’s willing to give me a $10 million check right now, what’s to say Nike or Adidas isn’t willing to give me $20 million or $30 million upfront or to say that the upfront money isn’t even the biggest thing.”

This is why LeBron is a special man on the court, and in the business world.  He believes in himself.

 

Is LaVar Ball doing the right thing?

In an amazing twist, none of the three major shoe companies will be signing Lonzo Ball to a deal.  One reason is the family wanted one of the major shoe companies to license “Big Baller Brand,” according to ESPN.

“We’re looking for co-branding, a true partner. But they’re not ready for that because they’re not used to that model. But hey, the taxi industry wasn’t ready for Uber, either,” Ball told ESPN.

Unfortunately, the chicken does not come before the egg. Michael Jordan had to do big things on the court, sell shoes with NIKE, in order to get “Jordan Brand” rolling.  While Lonzo Ball could be special in the NBA, he has to prove that he can play and also sell shoes. Those two things are not always synonymous. Ask Steph Curry.

At one point, LaVar was talking about a billion dollar shoe deal for his three boys, which sounded crazy at the time, and still sounds even crazier today. According to Hall of Famer Tracy Mcgrady, when talking about LaVar’s three sons NBA chances, on ESPN’s The Jump, Mcgrady said LaVar has “One and a possible.” That one is Lonzo Ball.

I do respect LaVar Ball and his vision, but he needs to slow it down a little.  Why would Nike, Under Armour, or Adidas want to co-brand with a player who might turn out to be an average player?

I think LaVar Ball is making a big mistake. You don’t have to sign with one of the sneaker companies forever.  Sign with one the major shoe companies and continue to grow your brand.

LaVar is a visionary, and average people have a hard time understanding a visionary.

However, not all visions come to true.

We’ll wait for Plan B LaVar.

Larry Bird steps down as Pacers’ president

According to The Vertical, Larry Bird is walking away from his job as Pacers’ president. Bird will continue to be a consultant to the Pacers, according to the report.

The Pacers were swept in the first-round by Cleveland.

Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas will attend his sister’s funeral after Game 6

Isaiah Thomas is expected to travel to Tacoma, Washington after game 6 in Chicago to attend his sister Chyna’s funeral, according to the Boston Globe.  The funeral is scheduled for Saturday.  If the Bulls win on Friday night, the series would return to Boston for game seven on Sunday. The Celtics could start their second-round series on Sunday, if Boston and the Wizards win on Friday night.

Both the Celtics and Wizards lead their series 3-2.