Myron Medcalf, ESPN Staff Writer 52d

LaVar Ball takes his walking reality show to the masses

Looking for a new series to binge on this weekend?

Well, a reality show featuring LaVar Ball and his talented sons, “Ball in the Family,” is out now on Facebook.

Yes. LaVar Ball has his own show now.

The first two episodes of the multipart series will be released Thursday through Facebook, with additional episodes to begin airing Sept. 10.

Produced by Bunim/Murray Productions, the same group behind “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” and “The Real World,” the show follows viral star and family patriarch LaVar Ball, Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball, prep sensation LaMelo Ball, UCLA freshman LiAngelo Ball and Tina Ball, the wife and mother of the clan, who is recovering from a stroke.

“We are thrilled to work with the Ball family to share their remarkable story at a pivotal moment in their lives,” said Gil Goldschein, chairman and CEO of Bunim/Murray Productions. “For fans, it will be a front-row seat to how the family deals with the sky-high expectations heaped upon it.”

Per the trailer released this week, the show will offer much of what we’ve come to expect from LaVar Ball and his family.

During an AAU tournament, LaVar tells LaMelo, who has nearly 3 million Instagram followers, “Until you learn to be like your brother, you’ll be sorry as hell.”

He brags. He jokes. He brags some more.

But the show will also address one of the family’s great challenges: Tina’s stroke and subsequent recovery. In one scene, LaVar helps her move around a pool during a rehab session and reassures his sons that he’ll take care of her.

The trailer suggests that the film crew captured Tina before, during and after her stroke.

With Los Angeles a frequent backdrop, they’ll do a bunch of stuff only celebrities do.

Lonzo shops for Porsches. The family hops aboard personal watercraft and swims with sharks.

In one clip, Lonzo discusses his relationship with his girlfriend, who will also play a significant role in the show, if the trailer is any indication. He also talks about his role as the face of the Lakers and the hoopla surrounding his arrival.

“I just don’t like losing,” Lonzo admits in the trailer. “Obviously, the pressure is there. I just want to live up to it.”

The Ball reality show represents Facebook’s new push toward creating original video content.

"Our goal is to make Facebook a place where people can come together around video," Nick Grudin, Facebook vice president of media partnerships, said about the site's foray into original video content. "To help get there, we're supporting a small group of partners and creators as they experiment with the kinds of shows you can build a community around -- from sports to comedy to reality to gaming."

Few families have enjoyed more popularity -- for better and worse -- over the past six months than the Balls.

During that stretch, Lonzo became the No. 2 pick in the NBA draft after leading UCLA to the Sweet 16 in March. LiAngelo started college and joined the Bruins this summer. LaMelo became the top point guard in the 2019 class.

And LaVar made headlines for claims he could beat Michael Jordan in one-on-one -- and MJ’s response -- and the $495 price tag he attached to the ZO2, the signature shoe of his Big Baller Brand. He climbed into the ring and challenged The Miz on a recent episode of WWE's "Monday Night Raw" as Lonzo and LaMelo watched. But he’s also drawn criticism for some of his comments and actions, such as his successful petition to have a female official removed from his game during an AAU tournament in July.

So Facebook is launching its new video platform, Watch, off one of basketball’s most popular and polarizing characters.

“We wanted to give our fans an unfiltered look into our lives and show them a side of us that isn’t typically seen,” LaVar Ball said, per the release. “We have a big community of fans on Facebook, so we’re excited our series is going to be on Watch. And who better to help us tell our story than Bunim/Murray Productions.”

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