Back in July, Lonzo Ball and longtime girlfriend Denise Garcia celebrated the birth of their daughter, Zoey. Yet, in the months since the second-year pro became a father, rumors had circulated about their relationship and Lonzo’s presence as a parent.
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The latest episode of Ball in the Family offered the most detailed glimpse to date of Lonzo’s struggles with parenthood, and it certainly has affected his relationship with Garcia.
Lonzo explained early in the episode, saying that his preparation for the season took away from his ability to be available for Denise and their daughter:.
“She gets kind of mad when I’m not there … It is what it is. I can’t really change my schedule at all. It’s a lot, but I gotta keep working … Me and Denise had a couple arguments. I know it’s tough on her that she has to do a lot of stuff right now by herself because I’m not there. She wants me to be there, but it’s pretty tough right now. She has to understand that.”.
In a conversation with her sister, Denise said that Lonzo would only visit Zoey on Saturdays before leaving the following day. Last month, she called out Lonzo in a series of Instagram posts and stories.
“Things have been tough as far as getting help from Zo because I get absolutely no help from him.”.
“I understand that his basketball career comes first, but our lives have changed dramatically. I knew it was going to change, but I didn’t know it would be this much of a change.”.
Lonzo eventually conceded that his dedication to the Lakers would prevent him from giving Denise the life that she wanted.
“Denise wants to live the fairytale life right now. Unfortunately, I can’t really give that to her because I’m not there all the time. I just don’t know what else I can do. I don’t blame her for the way she feels and wanting me to do more, but right now, I gotta be focused on my profession. Not only for myself but for my family. A lot is on my shoulders to make sure I take care of business.”.
While the two did not explicitly say that their relationship, which dates back to their high school days, had ended, Denise said that she just considered Lonzo “Zoey’s dad.” When asked about the state of their relationship, she said:.
“We’re just parents, I guess. He’s Zoey’s dad … I just want us both to be happy. Whatever that means, so if it’s us together then fine. But if it’s not, then it’s not.”.
You can watch the full episode here.