Donald Trump war of words was inevitable the moment LiAngelo Ball was arrested in China on suspicion of shoplifting during a UCLA team trip, which is a wild statement to say about the Kris Jenner of the basketball and the leader of the free world. Trump said in two tweets. "They were headed for 10 years in jail!", Trump tweeted on Wednesday.
Following their release, the president initially demanded the UCLA basketball players to thank him publicly for helping to return them home.
"What was he over there for?" "Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out", he added.
But Ball's father LaVar Ball, a brash media personality known for outspoken advocacy of his three basketball playing sons, minimised the president's role in an interview Friday with sports network ESPN.
LiAngelo Ball was arrested in China and charged with shoplifting along with two of his UCLA teammates just days before the Bruins were scheduled to play Georgia Tech. "I should have left them in jail!"
On Wednesday, the players indeed thanked Trump. "Be careful, there are many pitfalls on the long and winding road of life!" he wrote on Twitter.
Upon their return stateside, LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley, and Jalen Hill held a press conference, at which Ball thanked the president and the United States government for their help in their safe return after Trump wondered on Twitter if he would receive praise for his work in getting the young men back home. "I'm happy with how things were handled".
Fredricka Whitfield spoke with Stelter this afternoon on how "the way this President prioritizes is very confusing to a lot of people". I'm from L.A. I've seen a lot worse things happen than a guy taking some glasses.
"The president was saying, 'It's not too serious". The team's head coach, Steve Alford, later announced the trio was suspended indefinitely. And, in the end, that's surely exactly what Ball wanted.
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