LiAngelo Ball News

LiAngelo Ball Can Give the Los Angeles Lakers the Tim Tebow Effect for South Bay Lakers

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LiAngelo Ball declared for the 2018 NBA Draft yesterday, and the announcement set off a social media firestorm. The 6-foot-5 shooting guard for BC Vytautas has been playing well this season, and is currently leading the team in scoring with 15.7 PPG. While many are still skeptical as to whether or not he’ll be drafted, the value he can generate is similar to what another player is currently doing for a Major League Baseball organization, and that player is Tim Tebow.

The Tebow Effect

Last year, Tim Tebow decided to switch sports after playing professional football for three full seasons with the Denver Broncos (2010-11) New York Jets (2012), and two more with the New England Patriots (2013) and Philadelphia Eagles (2015) in which he failed to make the final 53-man rosters for both. Last year, he played an entire season in minor league baseball with the New York Mets organization’s Columbia Fireflies, and Port St. Lucie Mets. According to Baseball America, Tebow was worth approximately 2,000 fans per game.

Tampa Bay Baseball Market delved deeper into the Tebow Effect and noted the huge bump in attendance at ballparks when Tebow played, compared to the attendance prior to his arrival. The results were staggering. For example, in an 8-game sample size, Tebow drew in an additional 24,336 fans above average. That amounted to a 252% increase, which is ridiculous.

tebow effect

Tim Tebow shown here signing autographs during spring training. His impact on minor league attendance has been staggering. Photo by Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The LiAngelo Effect?

The Ball name carries major weight and a huge draw wherever they go. Take for instance last year’s NBA Summer League when rookie, Lonzo Ball brought out enormous crowds for fans to essentially watch a bunch of players who may never step foot in an actual NBA game. However, due to enormous attention placed on him, much of this credited to his father, LaVar, the 2017  Las Vegas Summer League was the most attended in history. It was dubbed the Lonzo Effect.

With the success and extra fanfare (revenue), it is conceivable that Las Vegas would love at least a duplicate of last year — if not more — and if Tim Tebow can draw tens of thousands of additional fans to minor league games, the Lakers — and other NBA teams — are certainly taking notes and considering adding LiAngelo to their G-League team as well.

Imagine LiAngelo suiting up for the South Bay Lakers and the possibility of scoring 72 points — Ok, maybe not — or maybe. Either way, this makes so much sense from a business standpoint, and it’s quite plausible Magic Johnson is quietly scouting LiAngelo right now. Not to mention, it’s not as if this is a publicity stunt like Tebow’s situation has been accused of. LiAngelo has been playing basketball, and only basketball for the majority of his life. Tebow had not played baseball since high school, and decided to pick up a bat and join a professional organization.

Speculation over whether LiAngelo will be drafted at all is in question, but the value he will add to an organization is undeniable.

Brandon Williams is the Editor in Chief for Fresh Sports TalkYou can follow him on Twitter @TalkinWithFresh, or “Like” him on Facebook.

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