Throughout the entire speculation of the NBA Draft, Lonzo Ball has been adamant on playing for his local team, the Los Angeles Lakers.
Lonzo Ball is easily a top prospect in this draft. He has impressed scouts and every day fans with his flashy style of play. His handles sent defenders skidding across the gym floor and his passing linked teammates through gaps unthinkably small.
After an individual workout with the Lakers faculty, Ball kept his status open about wanting to play with the team. He was questioned in an eight-minute interview after the workout took place, and he had some interesting comments about his tryout.
With the draft approaching quickly, (June 22), the Lakers will have to make their decision quickly. They hold the second pick in the draft, just behind the Boston Celtics. Although Lonzo is the leading prospect to be taken by the team, he isn’t a lock for the selection. The Lakers could take Kansas wing Josh Jackson to follow up with winger selection last year, Brandon Ingram. They could also take a man to run the offense in standout guard Markelle Fultz.
With that said, Lonzo still needs to prove to the Laker organization that he is the best choice for the pick, because there are other choices. The only thing we should be sure of is that he will not go to the Celtics first overall. Ball has refused to workout with the team and they already have All-Star guard Isaiah Thomas, so Boston has a good amount of reasons to pass on the UCLA guard.
As for why “Zo” is considered as a top 3 prospect is pretty simple. He averaged 14.6 points, 7.6 assists, and 6 rebounds during his UCLA career. He declared for the draft on March 24, directly after Kentucky booted his Bruins of the March Madness tournament. From there, he has been very transparent with the public and press about his dream to play with the Lakers.
Even coming along with his game, Lonzo already has his own shoe brand.
The brand is going to be Lonzo’s signature sneaker on the floor, because Lavar Ball has rejected sponsorship deals with Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour. The giant companies offered deals up to $10 million, but Lavar wanted a “more lucrative” deal.
The Lakers finished 14th in the Western Conference, with a record of 26-56 when the end of the season had passed. With Lonzo on the roster, the squad could pack a solid punch to the rest of the league. Ball has said he wants to play for them because it is his hometown team, and he has been supporting them all of his life. It also helps that LA is a huge market, which will be even more beneficial to their brands future.
The solo workout on Wednesday was a huge step towards deciding the future of Lonzo Ball. He said that he got “positive vibes” about the workout. Even Magic Johnson was present at the trial. His dad once said on live television that Lonzo is like Magic except with a jump shot. Critics say that his odd shot form could be a hindrance in his pro career.
All in all, Lonzo will be playing in the National Basketball Association next year, whether it is for the Lakers or a different team. Lonzo has told the media that he will “go to any team and just do what I do. Play basketball”. That’s all us basketball fans want; to watch Lonzo Ball compete against the best basketball players the world has to offer.