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VILNIUS – LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball went scoreless in their pro basketball debut, finishing a combined 0 for 7.
The younger brothers of Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball played in the Lithuanian league for BC Prienai on Saturday. Their team lost 95-86 to Lietkabelis Panevezys.
The brothers didn’t have much time to contribute, with 19-year-old LiAngelo (0-for-3 shooting) logging just nine minutes and 16-year-old LaMelo Ball (0-for-4 shooting) tallying just five minutes on the court.
Although the Ball brothers combined for 29 points on Tuesday in the Big Baller-sponsored showcase tournament — a five-game “friendly” series designed for second-tier teams — Vytautas coach Virginijus Seskus told ESPN before the game he wasn’t sure how much he’d be able to play the teenagers in upgraded competition.
The brothers signed with the Lithuanian team last month after LiAngelo withdrew from UCLA. He was suspended indefinitely following his arrest for shoplifting during a recent tour of China.
That sparked a Twitter spat between father LaVar Ball and President Donald Trump.
LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball combined for 29 points in an exhibition against the reserve team of Zalgiris on Tuesday. It was the first of five planned exhibitions designed to showcase the Ball brothers. Another is scheduled for Monday.
In basketball-crazy Lithuania, the game is often dubbed the “second religion” and attracts huge crowds to arenas even in small towns. There have been several Lithuania players in NBA teams, including Portland Trail Blazers center Arvydas Sabonis and Zydrunas “Big Z” Ilgauskas of the Cleveland Cavaliers.