NBA Rumor: LiAngelo Ball Free Agency

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LiAngelo Ball is getting a co-sign from one of the NBA’s top talents … with Jayson Tatum telling TMZ Sports the Summer League standout is long overdue to have a spot in the league!! The 22-year-old showed out during his time playing in Vegas over the past week — scoring 9.6 points in 17 minutes per game … with several incredible highlight plays. We caught up with the Boston Celtics star outside Avra in Beverly Hills about Gelo’s string of performances … and he thinks Ball did enough to get him on an active roster for 2021. “I think so,” Tatum tells us. “It’s only right, he’s put in the work. I’m sure he’ll find his way on a team.”

Hornets to sign LiAngelo Ball

LiAngelo Ball, the brother of rookie of the year LaMelo Ball, is expected sign a with the Hornets and be on their summer league roster when it’s finalized, league sources told SI.com’s All Hornets. The move is on track to happen as the team prepares to fully assemble its roster and depart for summer league in Las Vegas from August 8-17. Playing in the league’s summer showcase next month could provide Ball, 22, with the opportunity he needs to jumpstart his career.

Ball, who went undrafted in 2018, signed with the Oklahoma City Blue — the G League affiliate of the Oklahoma City Thunder — just three days prior to the league shutting down on March 12, 2020 due to the pandemic and never played for them. He inked an Exhibit 10 contract with Detroit in early December and was waived 12 days later, failing to appear in any games after reportedly suffering a right ankle injury. Besides Ball, the expectation is Vernon Carey Jr., Nick Richards and the team’s first-round pick on Thursday will be among those suiting up for the Hornets during summer league, per league sources.

In November, LiAngelo Ball announced that he was planning on pursuing an NBA G League contract. With just 13 games left in the regular season, the middle Ball brother still hasn’t found a spot on a G League roster. However, he has garnered some interest from teams overseas, including the London Lions of the British Basketball League. In the most recent episode of “Ball In the Family,” LiAngelo revealed that the London Lions had expressed interest in signing him to a contract.

LaVar Ball says the pathway for LiAngelo Ball to get to the Lakers is a clear one … and it runs through the new hoops league he created — THE JBA!! L.A. — along with the other 29 teams in the NBA — passed on Gelo in the draft last month … so now the most famous Ball has a new plan to fix that — put him in a JBA jersey with LaMelo. “It’s not even a yellow brick road,” LaVar tells TMZ Sports. “It’s a road that he has to take. It’s nothing wrong with this.”

LiAngelo Ball says he’s going to be a Los Angeles Laker! … Eventually. We got Lonzo’s little bro at LAX on Wednesday … and we just had to ask about his dad’s prediction that Gelo will join up with Zo in the purple and gold. “Yeah, I will,” Gelo says. “Probably later. I think I will.” Just one problem … Gelo says nobody from the NBA has called about putting him on their roster — so sounds like it’ll DEFINITELY be later rather than sooner.

LiAngelo Ball chased his dream of making it to the NBA, but has since struggled to garner a Summer League invite as an undrafted free agent, let alone get drafted into the league by the Los Angeles Lakers. Despite devoting so much of his life to this pursuit—and coming up empty thus far—Gelo sounded like a young man at peace with his circumstances during a recent appearance on V103 Atlanta alongside Lonzo Ball and LaVar Ball. “It’s not upsetting at all,” he said. “At the end of the day, I’m only 19. So people acting like it’s the end of the world for me, like I’m 26 or something. Nah, I’m 19. I got other stuff I could do.”
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October 18, 2021 | 10:03 pm EDT Update