BC Vytautas

BC Vytautas and Coach Seskus Have not Held up their End of the Bargain


It’s been three months for the Ball family — LaVar, LiAngelo, and LaMelo — and the Lithuania experiment. So far, they have acclimated themselves into their new team, BC Vytautas, as well as traveled all over Europe in a short amount of time.

In addition, they have furthered the building of the brand by hosting several exhibition games dubbed, the Big Baller Challenge Games. However, through all of their successes on and off the court, things just aren’t right with the Balls and Vytautas, and much of this can be attributed to fiery head coach, Virginijus Seskus.

In the beginning, LaVar believed he had a great relationship with Coach Seskus. Both around the same age, and similar styles in terms of competitiveness. The situation Seskus was placed in was a vicarious one though. Here it is, two teenaged Americans thrusted smack dab into a professional basketball season — 18 games in.

The pressure of being a coach in general is high. Imagine going from a relative nobody, to now an internationally known professional club in a matter of days — but it comes with the territory.

While Seskus is revered as a local legend in the town of Prienai, the task at hand is proving to be too much for him. Sure, managing players who have little to no chance of making it to the big stage is cool. Dealing with quite possibly the biggest, and fastest rising superstar in LaVar Ball and his sons is something else.

This became more evident the moment Seskus failed to start both LiAngelo and LaMelo on their February 4th contest against the top team in the LKL, Zalgiris.

With many players out due to injury and newly signed point guard, Rashaun Broadus joining the team days before the game, Seskus opted to stick with the other players, and surprisingly started Broadus over LaMelo.

Strike one.

Now, it’s more than understandable why Seskus would be apprehensive in supplanting two teenagers over his current players — who just joined the team a few weeks prior. However, the demands from LaVar were not without prior expectations.

Before the Ball brothers joined the team, it was stated in their contract they would receive 25 minutes per game, and they must be played together (albeit in the Baltic League, which they eventually withdrew from). Understandably, the first game of their pro career, they received a combined 14 minutes. They barely practiced, and there’s no way they could have known any offensive or defensive assignments that quickly.

Where Seskus is not alone in this is where Vytautas as a club has dropped the ball — literally. From the moment they signed the two, they have been capitalizing off the Ball’s name for advertising and revenue increasing opportunities.

They immediately began selling their jerseys, added their names to their social media bios, (which have grown exponentially since their arrival) and have included them in tons of marketing and advertising — only to see them receive limited minutes early on, and now LaMelo barely playing at all as of late.

How can LaVar feel comfortable with leaving LaMelo with this club for another season? Why, after helping to relieve them out of financial hardship, trust them to further enhance the development of LaMelo for the next two seasons?

The answer is simple: He can’t. Unless…

Changes clearly have to be made. Should Vytautas desire to continue to capitalize on the huge market share they’ve grown and exposure with the Ball family, a respectable reassigning of Coach Seskus must be in the works.

lavar ball virginijus seskus

TImes have been tense between LaVar Ball and Virginijus Seskus this season. In order for the Big Baller to remain a part of the club, Vytautas may have to part ways with their beloved coach. (Photo by Alius Koroliovas/Getty Images)

He and LaVar will no longer be able to work together in the same capacity they are currently. While Seskus is beloved in Prienai, he is a small town coach, with a small town-like vision. The ability to manage huge personalities and grandiose type situations such as what Big Baller Brand stands for, requires someone more suitable for those needs.

It’s no different than when former Lakers head coach, Del Harris was relieved of his duties in favor of Phil Jackson. To recreate the Showtime Lakers, you had to have a showtime coach. Someone whose ego superseded anything and anyone, especially with the likes of Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant on the squad.

The season itself has had to be exhausting for Seskus as well. He’s essentially caught in the middle between an organization who wants to take advantage of this rare opportunity, and simply just wanting to coach basketball.

As of now, Vytautas is showtime. They are must-see TV. LaVar, LiAngelo, and LaMelo give them exposure to an entire realm of possibilities they didn’t know existed 90 days ago. LaVar on the other hand, is ever plotting, ever planning, and if changes aren’t made, he will forever be gone from Lithuania, and what was once considered a once in a lifetime experience — will evaporate forever in the Lithuania skies.

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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