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UCLA Announces Punishment For LiAngelo Ball And His Teammates

LaVar, LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball in a Lithuanian press conference.

PRIENAI, LITHUANIA - JANUARY 05: LaVar Ball along with his sons LiAngelo and LaMelo Ball during a press conference after LiAngelo and LaMelo's first training session with Vytautas Prienai on January 5, 2018 in Prienai, Lithuania. (Photo by Alius Koroliovas/Getty Images)

The three UCLA freshmen who were arrested for shoplifting from stores while in China held their first press conference since the incident.

The three players—LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley, and Jalen Hill—were under what amounted to house arrest at the team hotel, and missed the team's season opener against Georgia Tech.

President Donald Trump, who happened to be on a trip through Asia during the incident, and the U.S. State Department intervened on behalf of the players, who faced the potential of years in prison.

Earlier today, President Trump tweeted that he wondered whether the UCLA players would thank him for his role in their release. During their statements, all three players did so, as did athletic director Dan Guerrero.

After the three players spoke, head coach Steve Alford announced that the three players are suspended indefinitely, and will not suit up for home games or travel with the team.

Alford opened the door for the three players to return to the team at some point, but did not outline a timetable for their reinstatement.

UCLA men's basketball returns to play tonight, hosting Central Arkansas at 11 p.m. ET.