ESPN Condemns LaVar Ball For ‘Completely Inappropriate’ Comment To ‘First Take’ Co-Host Molly Qerim

LaVar Ball (L), father of basketball player LiAngelo Ball and the owner of the Big Baller brand, attends a promotional event in Hong Kong on November 14, 2017.
UCLA players LiAngelo Ball -- the younger brother of Los Angeles Lakers rookie star Lonzo Ball -- and teammates Cody Riley and Jalen Hill were arrested on November 7 in Hangzhou ahead of their regular-season-opening game against Georgia Tech in nearby Shanghai this past weekend. ESPN reported that they were nabbed on suspicion of stealing from a Louis Vuitton store and later freed on bail but ordered to remain in Hangzhou.  / AFP PHOTO / Anthony WALLACE        (Photo credit should read ANTHONY WALLACE/AFP/Getty Images)

ESPN Condemns LaVar Ball For ‘Completely Inappropriate’ Comment To ‘First Take’ Co-Host Molly Qerim

Jemele Hill even praised Qerim for her handling of the incident.

Published June 19, 2019

Written by Paul Meara

LaVar Ball has been making news recently for his comments about his son Lonzo being traded from the Los Angeles Lakers to the New Orleans Pelicans.

In his typical braggadocious way, Ball claimed the Lakers would not win a championship without his son. And while the sentiment made headlines and even more roll their eyes in annoyance, his most recent appearance on ESPN’s First Take has many angry.

Joining Stephen A. Smith, Max Kellerman and host Molly Qerim Rose, Ball continued to discuss his son’s future in the NBA when Rose interrupted the back-and-forth between him and Stephen A., requesting to “shift gears” to another subject. His response?

“You can switch gears with me any time,” he replied.

  1. The comment raised Qerim Rose’s eyebrows, but she kept it professional and moved on through the segment. At the end of the ordeal, the anchor joked on TV that she’d be getting a hold of HR after she gets off the air.

  2. ESPN didn’t take the comment lightly. "LaVar Ball's comment to Molly Qerim Rose was completely inappropriate," ESPN said in a statement to TMZ. "We made him aware of that."

    TMZ even caught up with Qerim Rose after the program aired and asked her about it.

    She says ESPN had her back on the matter. "ESPN was really supportive," Qerim told the celebrity news outlet. "All the executives had my back. Much appreciated."

    When asked whether she received an apology from LaVar Ball or his team, she said, "I haven't heard from anybody, but to be honest with you, I shut my phone off after work."

  3. The 'First Take' exchange had many praising Molly Qerim Rose’s handling of the situation
  4. While others criticized LaVar for his creepy comment



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