In a series of early-morning tweets, President Donald Trump continued his ongoing feud with LaVar Ball, father of one of the UCLA students arrested in China for shoplifting. Trump called Ball "a poor man's version of Don King" and an "ungrateful fool."
"It wasn't the White House, it wasn't the State Department, it wasn't father LaVar's so-called people on the ground in China that got his son out a long term prison sentence - IT WAS ME. Too bad! LaVar is just a poor man's version of Don King, but without the hair," Trump tweeted Nov. 22, comparing Ball to the controversial boxing promoter and Trump supporter.
"Just think LaVar, you could have spent the next 5 to 10 years during Thanksgiving with your son in China, but no NBA contract to support you," Trump continued. "But remember LaVar, shoplifting is NOT a little thing. It's a really big deal, especially in China. Ungrateful fool!"
The tweets came two days after Ball appeared on CNN and for a second time claimed that Trump deserved no thanks for getting his son and two other UCLA players out of China after they were arrested.
"I had some things done, I talked to some people that did some things, too," Ball told CNN.
Ball, also the father of Los Angeles Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball, had previously responded "Who?" to an ESPN reporter's question about Trump's help in getting his son out of China.
"What was he over there for? Don't tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out," LaVar Ball said.
Trump quickly jumped on Twitter to fire back at the elder Ball, saying he should have left the UCLA players in jail.
"Now that the three basketball players are out of China and saved from years in jail, LaVar Ball, the father of LiAngelo, is unaccepting of what I did for his son and that shoplifting is no big deal. I should have left them in jail!" Trump tweeted Nov. 19.
"Shoplifting is a very big deal in China, as it should be (5-10 years in jail), but not to father LaVar Ball," Trump continued. "Should have gotten his son out during my next trip to China instead. China told them why they were released. Very ungrateful!"
The feud between Trump and LaVar Ball ignited after three UCLA basketball players -- Ball's son LiAngelo, Jalen Hill and Cody Riley -- were arrested for shoplifting from three stores in Hangzhou, China, while the team was overseas, according to USA Today.
The Washington Post reports that while meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping as part of his Asia tour, Trump personally asked Xi to resolve the case.
Upon their return to the U.S., the three players thanked Trump during a press conference.
Sources: Donald J. Trump/Twitter (2, 3, 4), CNN, ESPN, USA Today, The Washington Post / Featured Image: Gage Skidmore/Flickr / Embedded Images: D. Myles Cullen/The White House via Wikimedia Commons, Erwin Kreijne/Wikimedia Commons