Per usual, the Los Angeles Lakers hosted several prospects for workouts in advance of the 2018 NBA Draft. While most teams cast a wide net when evaluating potential picks, the Lakers were among the few teams who held a pre-draft workout with LiAngelo Ball.
That surprised most and perhaps everyone but LaVar Ball, who predicted even before the Lakers drafted Lonzo Ball with the No. 2 overall pick in 2017 that all three of his sons would eventually wind up with the franchise.
LaVar championed LiAngelo as the best shooter available in the 2018 Draft, and was confident the Lakers would select him with one of their three picks. They instead took Moritz Wagner with the 25th overall pick, followed by Isaac Bonga at No. 39 (second round).
That left LiAngelo’s only chance of getting picked by the Lakers 47th overall. When they used it on Svi Mykhailiuk, it naturally led to disappointment for LiAngelo, who was sitting courtside at a JBA game and promptly left his seat.
The sequence begins around 10:30 into the clip above. In it, LiAngelo states he was “really hoping to get picked by the Lakers.” After L.A. passed on him, LiAngelo’s next opportunity lied with the Phoenix Suns at No. 59.
They too opted not to draft LiAngelo, and though there was optimism in his camp, he didn’t catch on with a team for Summer League. While the Lakers invited him for a pre-draft workout, it was reported shortly after they didn’t have any intention of selecting LiAngelo or signing him for the summer.
Meanwhile, Mykhailiuk went on to have a productive Summer League, shedding the label of being just a shooter and drawing praise from the Lakers coaching staff for his early development.