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LaVar Ball, the father of one of the (now former) UCLA players arrested in China for shoplifting, says he expects one thing out of President Donald Trump.

And the president is quite familiar with Ball.

Ball, the owner of the Big Baller Brand line of basketball shoes, downplayed Trump's role in securing the UCLA players' release from house arrest in China and helping them avoid a possible 10-year prison sentence after they were accused of stealing from a Louis Vuitton store in Hangzhou.

Trump was on a tour of Asia when the incident occurred and later said he spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping about it. After Ball's statement, the president was set off and let it rip on Twitter:

Trump had previously told the players they should thank the people who got them out of trouble:

Ball, the outspoken father of basketball player LiAngelo Ball, said he sent the president some of his family’s brand of shoes.

He told CNN he sent the president three pairs of shoes — “red, white and blue“ to ”show him that we’re patriotic.”

Screengrab/CNN 

And he said the president should have received them by now.

Ball sent the shoes sometime after Thanksgiving, but it’s not like the postal carrier just dumps a pile of mail on the president’s desk every day.

As The New York Times reported on a story about former President Barack Obama titled “To Obama, With Love, and Hate, and Desperation,” the presidential mail room is busy, but Obama saw only 10 pieces of mail per day, each culled by a group of interns and staffers:

Ten interns sat at two long tables, each trying to get through 300 letters. Grab a bundle, sit down and read.

Obama said that about 40,000 pieces of mail come each day to the White House:

By the time I got to the White House and somebody informed me that we were going to get 40,000-or-whatever-it-was pieces of mail a day. I was trying to figure out how do I in some way duplicate that experience I had during the campaign. And I think this was the idea that struck me as realistic. Ten a day, I figured I could do.

And considering poison has been sent to the White House via the mail, one can see why packages might have to be scrutinized.

The White House actually tries to dissuade people from sending gifts and warns that the vetting process is brutal:

Screenshot/WhiteHouse.gov

And the shoes, at $495 a pair, are way over the limit of what Trump can legally accept as a personal gift, which is $375.

But on CNN on Tuesday, Ball said there might be a new song at the White House:

Screengrab/CNN 

Ball wants the president to thank him for the shoes.

So far, it’s not known if the president has received them.

Please note: This is a commentary piece. The views and opinions expressed within it are those of the author only and do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of IJR.

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