As we inch closer to the NBA Draft, the Los Angeles Lakers are keeping people guessing on who they will take with the second overall pick. There have been a plethora of rumors regarding just how fond they are of UCLA guard Lonzo Ball, with some suggesting that they won’t draft him despite most seeing him as the favorite.
Should they pass on Ball, that would open the door for either Kansas forward Josh Jackson or Kentucky guard De’Aaron Fox, assuming that the Boston Celtics draft Markelle Fultz as is expected, but not guaranteed.
Adding to the intrigue, Chad Ford of ESPN Insider recently updated his mock draft. While he does have the Lakers selecting Ball with the second pick, he notes that it is far from a lock and that there are disagreements within the front office:
The Lakers are going out of their way to stifle talk that Ball to L.A. is a done deal. Partially it’s about controlling the narrative and their draft destiny, but it’s also around some genuine disagreements in the front office about who’s the best pick for the Lakers’ future.
Fox and Jackson have a real shot at going No. 2. Ball is the favorite, but he’s far from a lock.
The Lakers should absolutely be doing whatever they can to discourage the notion that Ball is set in stone as their pick. They haven’t worked out any of the top prospects yet and making a pick known simply gives opposing teams an advantage as they plan out their own draft strategies.
The front office being torn on who to draft makes sense at this point, especially considering the Lakers have yet to work out any of the top prospects. Ball will be the first to come in while Fox is expected to workout next week. There has been no word on when Jackson will come in.
Once workouts are completed it should clarify some things for the Lakers, but there could still be some questions as to who is the best fit. Unlike last year, it looks as if who the Lakers will ultimately pick will be a major question mark until that pick is officially announced.