LiAngelo Ball Intends to Play in G League; LaMelo to Return to High School

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistNovember 6, 2018

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 29:  LiAngelo Ball #2 walks on the court during the Los Angeles Lakers 2018 NBA Pre-Draft Workout on May 29, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

LiAngelo Ball will enter the NBA G League player pool in hopes of signing with a G League team, Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic reported Tuesday.

LaMelo Ball, meanwhile, announced on Twitter he'll enroll at Spire Institute in Geneva, Ohio, for his senior year of high school: 


I’ve decided to return to highschool and complete my senior year. I thank my dad for the JBA Experience and playing overseas. I’ve been accepted to attend Spire Prep Academy in Geneva, Ohio where i look forward to earning my highschool diploma and winning with my new team! https://t.co/FQzta0PiNE

Slam Online's Franklyn Calle first reported LaMelo's decision and noted he'll be eligible to play at Spire Institute since it's a prep school rather than a public high school. He's likely to make his first appearance Nov. 13 against La Porte, Indiana's La Lumiere School. 

LaMelo discussed his decision with Calle: "I'm excited to return to school and rejoin my class on the court for my senior year. Playing in international competition was a great experience. I learned and matured so much. I appreciated the JBA experience my dad provided for me. I think it helped my development. I can't wait to play with my peers."

Ball had been enrolled at Chino High School in California before his father, LaVar, pulled him out in October 2017. By returning to the United States, the youngest Ball will have an opportunity to showcase his talent in front of more scouts and coaches.

Because he left Chino Hills, Ball is no longer listed in 247Sports' composite rankings. CBSSports.com's Colin Ward-Henninger noted in December 2017 that Ball was the No. 15 overall player in the 2019 class before he dropped out.

LiAngelo Ball withdrew from UCLA in December 2017 following his arrest in China on suspicion of shoplifting.

Together, the Ball brothers moved to Lithuania to play for BC Vytautas.

LiAngelo averaged 12.6 points and 2.9 rebounds while shooting 41.5 percent from three-point range in 14 appearances for Vytautas in the Lithuanian Basketball League (LKL). LaMelo posted 6.5 points and 2.4 assists per game in eight LKL appearances.

They have since moved on to feature in the Junior Basketball Association, a league founded by LaVar Ball and sponsored by Big Baller Brand.

LiAngelo was eligible for the 2018 NBA draft but wasn't selected. Cameras were following him on draft night for the Facebook Watch series Ball In The Family. He said he wished the Lakers had selected him with the 47th overall pick and that he thought he would be a target for the Phoenix Suns at No. 59.

The scene begins at the 10:34 mark of the episode:

Ball didn't sign with a team for the NBA Summer League and declined to participate in public tryouts for the G League in favor of representing the United States for the JBA's international tour.