RUMOR: Alan Foster encouraged Lonzo Ball to only work out for Lakers before 2017 Draft
It turns out Big Baller Brand co-founder Gregory Alan Foster encouraged Lonzo Ball to work out exclusively for the Los Angeles Lakers prior to the 2017 NBA Draft.
The Los Angeles Times’ Tania Ganguli and Richard Winton broke the news on April 24.
Foster also encouraged Lonzo to refuse to work out for any team other than the Lakers, according to a person familiar with their communications.
In June 2017, Foster sat at the Ball family table along with LaVar, his three sons, and Lonzo’s agent, Harrison Gaines, as the Lakers chose Lonzo second overall in the draft.
When the pick was made, Lonzo got congratulations from everyone, including a handshake-hug from Foster, and quickly put on a Lakers-themed Big Baller Brand shoes.
Foster advising Ball to work out exclusively for the Lakers is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg. According to Ganguli and Winton, Foster served five years in federal prison “for taking part in a scheme that deprived investors of $3.755 million.” The stock market scheme allegedly involved 75 investors.
Foster and his business partner, Steven Woods, promised investors a return of 25 percent on their stock shares after 90 days. Instead, they used their money for “mortgage payments, rent, and leases on luxury automobiles,” per The Los Angeles Times report.
After serving a five-year prison sentence, Foster made headlines again. Foster, who was released on probation, “violated the terms of his release and went back to prison for five more months,” per Ganguli and Winton.
Shortly afterward, Foster met LaVar Ball, his fellow parent at their sons’ middle school. The two formed the sports apparel company Big Baller Brand in June 2016 – almost a year before the Lakers made Lonzo Ball the second overall pick of the 2017 NBA Draft.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 3, 2019
Ball and Big Baller Brand filed a lawsuit against Foster earlier this month for allegedly taking more than $1.5 million from the company’s funds. Ganguli and Winton also say Foster accepted “substantial undisclosed referral fees from at least eight loans he arranged on behalf of the company.”
Based on the L.A. Times report, it seems Foster is one shady character. Although it hurt Ball to part ways with Foster, it’s better for the former to move on. After all, he’s just 21 years old.
He will enjoy playing many more years in the NBA.