After being selected second overall on by the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday night, Lonzo Ball had more business to attend to on Friday. Ball threw out the first pitch at Dodger Stadium on Friday night and the man who caught the pitch (which was over the plate) was Dodgers closer, and noted Lakers fan, Kenley Jansen.
Jansen requested to be allowed to catch the pitch once he was informed that the Lakers’ draft pick would be throwing it and for his part, Jansen was decked out in a throwback Magic Johnson jersey, though he admittedly hoped to find a Shaq one.
Afterwards, Jansen spoke with Matthew Moreno of Dodger Blue about the state of the Lakers and believes they are headed in the right direction:
“They’re going in the right direction, and it’s going to be fun,” Jansen said. “Magic knows what he’s doing, plus he has Pelinka. They’ve got a good staff. You have one of the best up and coming head coaches in Luke Walton. Everything is looking bright for the Lakers future right now.”
Jansen also showed supreme confidence in Lakers president of basketball operations, and Dodgers part-owner, Magic Johnson:
“He’s our owner, and he’s done a terrific job making moves. You can see the Lakers franchise is on the right direction. He did it as a player, so now he’s going to do it as a team president too.”
Magic is definitely on his way to making the Lakers a contender again and the selection of Ball is a step in the right direction. With Ball, Brandon Ingram and the rest of the young core continuing to develop, and plans on making big moves in the summer of 2018, the Lakers could be back sooner rather than later.
Jansen will undoubtedly be watching every step of the way, but in the meantime he will continue locking down games for the Dodgers.