Listen to Lonzo Ball’s Debut Album ‘Born 2 Ball’

Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball dropped his debut mixtape, Born 2 Ball, under the rap moniker Zo on Thursday. He’d been teasing the project for last few months, releasing four songs, including “Get Off,” “BBB,” “Zo2” and the Dragon Ball Z–inspired cut “Super Saiyan.”

The tape’s official artwork is an old family photo of Lonzo as a baby, alongside his father, LaVar Ball. In addition to the four singles, there are an 13 other tracks on the tape, with the last song appropriately titled after his dad.

 

2/15/18 #B2B

A post shared by Lonzo Ball (@zo) on Feb 9, 2018 at 8:05pm PST

As reported by Hip Hop N More, Lonzo’s friend Kenneth Paige helped with a few songs on Born 2 Ball, but the project doesn’t boast any features from big name artists.

In January, Lonzo announced that he’ll be traveling to Lithuania this summer to perform his first-ever rap show. His brothers LaMelo and LiAngelo play in the Lithuanian Basketball League, so it sort of makes sense, though is still pretty odd. ​Lonzo is also reportedly expecting his first child with his girlfriend Denise. She and Lonzo have been dating since they were in high school.

Stream Born 2 Ball below.

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LeBron to the Lakers This Summer? Not So Fast, According to a New Report

Folks around the NBA have murmured for more than a year now about LeBron James' purported interest in bolting to Los Angeles when he has the opportunity to opt out of his contract during the 2018 offseason. Would he really leave his hometown team twice in his career? That remains to be seen. But people around the league have suspected as much—and suspected that he's headed for Los Angeles—for a long time now.

LeBron owns two houses in L.A., and conquering the West would provide him with a new challenge—a new potential legacy boost, if you will. Also, the Lakers have a wealth of cap space, a promising young roster, and a storied history. If he could bring them back to prominence, well, it would do a ton for LeBron's place in the history books. Of the two L.A. franchises, it seemed way likelier that LeBron would desire a spot on the roster of the Lake Show.

According to a new report from two of the most plugged-in NBA reporters, however, the Lakers may pass on pursuing LeBron this offseason. As Adrian Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne of ESPN report, the Lakers are focusing their efforts—and their cap space—on the free-agent class of 2019 rather than that of 2018. The 2019 class is indeed ripe with young talent; Kawhi Leonard, Klay Thompson, and Jimmy Butler could be among the players on the market.

In 2018, it's expected that LeBron, Paul George, and DeMarcus Cousins will be available. But LeBron, as great as he is, is 33, George seems very interested in sticking with the Thunder, and Cousins just suffered an absolutely debilitating Achilles injury.

This recalibration also reportedly stems from the Lakers' lack of belief that LeBron is actually interested in joining the team. Though L.A. has a bunch of gifted young players—including Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, and Kyle Kuzma—there isn't a bona fide star on the roster. LBJ would be taking a big risk by signing with the yellow and purple.

A lot could change in the next few months, of course. The Lakers are still reportedly shopping Julius Randle and Jordan Clarkson. But with this latest report, it looks a lot less certain that LeBron will head to Hollywood this summer.

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Lonzo Ball Has Already Scheduled His First Rap Concert in Lithuania

This summer Lonzo Ball will be traveling to Lithuania to perform his first ever rap concert. Going to an Eastern European country for your debut rap concert would seem to be a bizarre move, until you consider that his two brothers are currently playing professional basketball over there. (Actually it still seems kind of odd, but whatever.)

Lonzo's announcement came as his dad, LaVar, was giving out the award for Hip-Hop Act of the Year at the M.A.M.A. Awards (which TMZ describes as being like the “Lithuanian Grammys”). He then introduced his oldest son via a prerecorded video:

For those who are either unaware or in need of a reminder, Lonzo has performed and recorded a number of songs (under the name “Zo”), including “Super Saiyan”:

…”Melo Ball 1″…:

…and, of course, “BBB”:

Get your tickets now.

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Lonzo Ball

Lonzo Ball gives us a tour of the Ball residence before droppin’ cash on a complete home recording studio package.

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What It’s Like to Make Custom Sneakers for Kanye West, LeBron James, and Lonzo Ball

Custom sneakers have become common place these days. Everyone has them: athletes, celebrities, and artists. They're worn on NFL fields, on NBA courts, and shared across social media. To get a better scope of what it's like to make these shoes, Sole Collector's Full Size Run caught up with Mache, the custom sneaker guru to the stars.

During the episode, he talks about a pair of sneakers he gifted to Kanye West that, supposedly, Adidas didn't want him to wear in public, making custom sneakers for LeBron James and Lonzo Ball, and what it was like to make the cleats that Stefon Diggs wore when he made the legendary catch last weekend against the New Orleans Saints.

Mache also reveals a pair of “Free Meek Mill” cleats that will be worn by Jarius Wright this weekend as the Minnesota Vikings play the Philadelphia Eagles.

 

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Kyle Kuzma Insults LaMelo Ball’s Teeth in Awkward Instagram Comeback

Throughout this NBA season, young Los Angeles Lakers stars Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball have developed a pretty interesting rapport on social media with their ongoing Troll Wars. By the looks of it, the two have become pretty close friends since joining the team, and what do all good friends do best? Relentlessly roast the hell out of each other. Both have gotten some good digs in on each other, but now it looks like even Lonzo's younger brother LaMelo is getting involved in the back-and-forth. 

Ahead of a Jan. 17 contest against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Kuzma posted a photo of his pregame fit to his Instagram. 

 

❄️❄️

A post shared by Kyle Kuzma (@kuzmakyle) on Jan 17, 2018 at 3:28pm PST

A quick look at the comments and you can see that LaMelo let his opinion be known that he wasn't too fond of the outfit Kuzma was flexing on social media by commenting, “He think he fly.” Rather than peacefully ignore the subtle jab, Kuzma decided the proper solution was to go right for LaMelo's jugular and clap back at his appearance as well. The high quality response read, “I'm so fly I could fly between that gap between yo teeth.”

No worries though. The 17-year old took the comment in stride. Apparently, he's even ready to fight another round after that haymaker. “Ima have to grill him,” LaMelo tweeted. 

This isn't the first time Kuzma has taken a shot at LaMelo. Before the 16-year old and his brother LiAngelo made the move from Chino Hills, California to Lithuania to play for Prienu Vytautas, LaMelo decided to post a goodbye on his IG. His caption read “Ima Miss The Hills,” and Kuzma was quick to assure LaMelo that “the hills ain't gone miss u.”

Kyle Kuzma, LaMelo Ball IG
Image via Imgur

This Troll Wars saga between the Ball family and Kuzma is starting to reach Bird-Magic levels of intensity, and we should all be appreciative of it. Most recently, Kuzma even came at Lonzo for rocking “toddler shoes.”

Despite the two young players clearly loving to come at each other's style whenever possible, the off-court chemistry is sure to eventually translate into some on-court success for years to come, much to the chagrin of Lakers fans everywhere. 

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Kobe Is Getting His Own NBA Analysis Show on ESPN

More post-retirement perks are on the way for Kobe Bryant. After getting two jersey numbers retired by the Los Angeles Lakers and a brand new Lakers uniform inspired by his legendary nickname unveiled last month, there is now word that the Black Mamba will be getting his own basketball analysis show on ESPN.

The show, which is titled Detail, will be written, produced, and hosted by Bryant and is a creative venture between ESPN and Kobe's Granity Studios. The show will be a simple enough premise. One of the best players in NBA history will be providing game analysis. What could be better than a generational talent critiquing other players on their game? Almost nothing. 

“Studying game film is how the best get better. It’s the university for a master’s degree in basketball.” Bryant tells ESPN. “I learned how to study film from the best coaches of all time – Phil Jackson and Tex Winter. Detail provides an opportunity to teach that skill to the next generation on large platform with ESPN.”

Detail is scheduled to premiere in March 2018 and will begin with an initial 15 episodes, starting at the tail end of the regular season and concluding during the NBA Finals.

Imagine Bryant breaking down a missed LeBron or KD game-winner in the playoffs? Incredible.

“Having an all-time great like Kobe share the same analysis he offers current players will be a tutorial for elite athletes around the world and the ultimate inside access for viewers,” says ESPN vice president of original content Kevin Wildes.

Bryant's Granity Studios has worked with ESPN in the past on Canvas City, which featured a purple snake puppet named Little Mamba as Kobe's sidekick, and the MuseCage Basketball Network segments as well.

Kobe has definitely remained busy post-retirement. Does this foray into analysis mean coaching could be in his future? He might be the key to getting Lonzo Ball and the Lakers back on track if LaVar runs current head coach Luke Walton out of town

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Why 2017 Was the Year of LaVar Ball

Hate him or love him, you couldn't escape LaVar Ball in 2017. He may have seemed like the ultimate Coach Dad with the way he hyped Lonzo Ball as being better than Steph Curry, but what started out as boasting from Papa Ball turned into LaVar's (successful) campaign to get Lonzo into the NBA.

He talked a lot of shit, and never found a camera he wouldn't speak in front of, but LaVar found a way to completely dominate the news cycle, whether it was about his family (which landed a Facebook reality series), the ZO2s (which finally did start shipping), or why he ended up putting LiAngelo and LaMelo to work in Lithuania.

Here's why, hated or not, LaVar Ball dominated the conversation in 2017.

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ComplexCon(versations) Returns With 2017 Sneaker of the Year Debate

One of the most talked-about moments at the inaugural ComplexCon was the Sneaker of the Year panel, which featured a roundtable of experts arguing over the best sneaker releases of 2016. This year's edition upped the ante in every way possible as it became another can't-miss event at ComplexCon 2017.

Those who weren't able to attend the ComplexCon(versations) panel now have full access to the debate.

Complex's own Joe La Puma (and host of Sneaker Shopping) once again handled hosting duties this year, and returning panelists DJ Clark Kent, Wale, and Russ Bengtson brought their expertise to a heated debate that also featured Lonzo Ball, Victor Cruz, Aleali May, and J Balvin.

Along with breaking down the top 10 sneakers of the year, Wale and Clark Kent took some time to critique Lonzo Ball and his ZO2 shoe, but also rounded it out with some praise for the Lakers star and the Ball family.

Check out the full panel debate above to find out which sneaker took the No. 1 slot, and keep it locked to Complex in 2018 as we'll be rolling out over a dozen ComplexCon(versations) episodes including My Beautiful Dark Twisted Panel with Rick Ross and Mike Dean, The Disruptors with LaVar Ball and Complex Networks CEO Rich Antoniello, and The Rap Generation Gap Debate featuring Cam'ron, Kyle, ASAP Ferg, and more.

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