By: Richard Obert, AZ Central | December 8, 2018
As soon as LaVar and his son LaMelo Ball stepped inside Scottsdale Chaparral’s gym Friday night, the standing-room only crowd stood and roared, looking in their direction.
Two hours earlier, the gym was already almost full in anticipation of the biggest spectacle in Hoophall West’s four-year history.
Many took out their iPhones, turned on their cameras and pointed them at them videotaping.
Later, as LaMelo Ball received a standing ovation as he came out with his Spire Institute teammates for warmups.
There’s a camera that is just pointing at LaVar Ball this game. pic.twitter.com/AgC6ZDNXRU
— Logan Newman (@Logan_Newsman) December 8, 2018
Oh, yeah, there was a game to play
And LaMelo Ball didn’t disappoint.
The senior had 18 points and 10 assists, leading Spire to an 85-69 rout.
His first shot was a high-arching shot way beyond the 3-point line during a 10-0 scoring burst to start the game.
“Every game,” 6-foot-6 forward Myron Gardner said about the traveling show featuring Ball that produces overflow crowds wherever they go.
There were spectators turned away at Chaparral. During halftime, outside of the gym, one fan complained about paying $15 and not being able to get a seat.
“Everywhere,” Gardner said about the masses that come out.
There was no telling what was going through LaMelo’s head. He went straight into the locker room after receiving the ball for outstanding player in the tournament and, more than an hour later, still hadn’t come out. His father was nowhere to be seen after the game.