When the Los Angeles Lakers selected Lonzo Ball with the second overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, they did so knowing that his outspoken father could create some issues for them.
LaVar Ball has a tendency to say inflammatory things, but his recent comments about Lonzo leaving the Lakers should the team not bring younger brothers LiAngelo and LaMelo on board take things to a whole new level.
The Lakers see Lonzo as one of the key building blocks of their franchise. Their current philosophy of pushing the pace and playing stingy defense meshes perfectly with Lonzo’s game, setting him up to be the team’s engine for year’s to come.
Having grown up with a father who regularly spouts off, Lonzo took LaVar’s latest comments in stride and said he remains focused on the court, via Bill Oram of the Southern California News Group:
“I did (see them),” he said. “No reaction. Like I said, I always just play. He always talks. It’s always been the same way.”
As is his M.O., Lonzo measured his words carefully, which is a stark contrast to LaVar’s approach.
For Lakers fans, it’s moments like these where it would be reassuring if Lonzo would deny LaVar’s claims, but one can understand that it’s also difficult to speak out against a family member. At some point, Lonzo will have to make his own decisions.
That said, this is certainly something for the organization to keep an eye on. LaVar has spoken in the past about having all three of his sons play for the Lakers, but this is the first time that he has threatened to leave the organization if his demands aren’t met.
Lonzo is only in the first year of his rookie deal, so there is plenty of time for everything to get sorted out, but this still isn’t a good look for anyone involved.
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