LaVar Ball claims President Trump had little to do with son’s release
President Trump again slammed outspoken commentator LaVar Ball on Twitter Wednesday, calling the father an “ungrateful fool” after Trump intervened in China’s decision to imprison LiAngelo Ball.
On Wednesday, the president stepped up his rhetoric against the “very ungrateful” Ball, who Trump described as a “poor man’s version of Don King, but without the hair.”
“Now that the three basketball players are out of China and saved from years in jail, LaVar Ball, the father of LiAngelo, is unaccepting of what I did for his son and that shoplifting is no big deal. I should have left them in jail!” Trump wrote Wednesday.
“Shoplifting is a very big deal in China, as it should be (5-10 years in jail), but not to father LaVar. Should have gotten his son out during my next trip to China instead. China told them why they were released. Very ungrateful!”
Trump’s feud with Ball started in early November.
Ball’s son, UCLA basketball player LiAngelo, was detained along with two other teammates after shoplifting during a trip to Hangzhou, China.
“LiAngelo Ball, Jalen Hill and Cody Riley apologized for their actions during a weeklong trip to China, during which they were arrested and accused of stealing a pair of sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton store in Hangzhou,” reports The Hill.
President Trump said he’d spoken to Chinese President Xi Jinping and had arranged for the basketball players to be released as they faced up to 10 years in prison.
Afterwards, the president asked on Twitter whether the three UCLA basketball players would thank him.
At a press conference following Trump’s tweet, the players apologized to China and thanked him for saving them from going to prison.
“To President Trump and the United States government, thank you for taking the time to intervene on our behalf,” Cody Riley stated. “We really appreciate you helping us out.”
However, Ball was seemingly not grateful for his son’s release.
On Friday, Ball commented that Trump had little to do with his son’s rescue.
“Who?” Ball asked ESPN. “What was he over there for? Don’t tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out.”
Ball also dismissed the severity of the international incident, saying the shoplifting offense “ain’t that big a deal.”
Trump immediately responded to Ball’s comments, saying he “should have left them in jail.”