LAS VEGAS — LaVar Ball blasted the female referee who gave him a technical foul on Friday morning at a tournament, which led to her being replaced mid-game.
“She’s got a vendetta,” Ball told ESPN after the game. “I get that she’s trying to break into the refereeing thing. But just giving techs and calling fouls, that’s no way to do it. I know what she’s trying to say, ‘Oh I gave LaVar a tech, I’m strong.’ That ain’t got nothing to do with it. Just call the game. If you’re going to be qualified, you better be in shape and you better know the game. And she’s bad on both of them. She’s not in shape, she’s not calling the game right. And she don’t understand. And now she’s trying to make a name for herself, so she’s walking around like, ‘You know I’m the only woman in here.’ Yeah, we get it. I don’t care if you’re a woman, or a man or whatever, just be good at what you do.
“She needs to stay in her lane because she ain’t ready for this. [Ref] the little kids first and then come up. Because she ain’t did enough. She ain’t got enough on her resume, I could tell.”
Ball threatened to pull his Big Baller Brand AAU team off the court in the first half of Friday morning’s Adidas Summer Championships game against Team BBC after receiving a technical foul. Shortly after yelling “We need to get someone else in here” while pointing to the referee, Ball turned to his team and said “Let’s go.” The players began to pick up their bags and walk off the court.
After a long meeting between the coaches, representatives from Adidas and representatives from Court Club Elite, which supplies the officials, the game resumed — with a different official in place of the one who gave a technical to Ball.
Adidas, which runs the event, said it was their decision to replace the referee.
“There was some miscommunication,” said Chris Rivers, Adidas director of global basketball sports marketing. “The NBA don’t put certain people with certain guys, either. If there’s a history or miscommunication, that happens.”
The referee also officiated Big Baller Brand’s game on Wednesday, where Ball received his first technical foul of the week.
“She came into this game what she was going to do,” Ball said. “I knew it too. If you would’ve interviewed me before the game, I’d say I guarantee you she gives me a tech on some BS. And look what happened. You’re just going be known for that, that’s all. See where she refs at next week.”
The game eventually ended early after Ball received his second technical foul and was ejected. Tournament organizers decided to end the game as opposed to playing the final minutes of Team BBC’s 53-43 win.
The replaced referee, whose name was not given by tournament officials, declined comment.
Former NBA referee Ed Rush, who runs Court Club Elite, denied Ball’s vendetta accusation.
“How can you have a history and she [works women’s basketball],” Rush said. “She just arrived here two days ago.”