;(Ethan Miller / Getty Images)Lonzo Ball’s summer league debut proved to be something we would have never imagined: disappointing. The hype around his draft day to his first look in an LA Lakers uniform was absolutely insane, but the game proved to be a letdown for him and his growing fan base.
The opening possession started well for the Lakers, with a 30-foot lob to Brandon Ingram for a dunk. We thought that this was the beginning of a great player and the rise of the Lakers franchise, but as the game progressed, we saw less and less of ZO. He finished with five points, on 2 of 15 shooting, along with 1 of 11 from beyond the arc. He produced four rebounds, five assists, three turnovers, and two steals. This was all in 32 minutes, whereas teammate Brandon Ingram produced 26 points, on 9-17 shooting and 1-4 from three. He also put up one rebound; three steals, two blocks, three assists, but put up five turnovers. As the game went on, we saw the number one option slowly shifted from Lonzo Ball to Brandon Ingram.
“The only way to go now is up,” Ball said. “That’ll probably be the worst game I’ll have all week, so hopefully I keep getting better.”
Now, what does this show about Lonzo and the Lakers? Will he still be the first option for the season, or will it shift to Brandon Ingram or even Brook Lopez? It is very hard to tell after just one game, but Lonzo believes in himself, and the Lakers and his father, Lavar, certainly believe in him. After all, wasn’t it Lavar who said that the Lakers were playoff bound this upcoming year because of his son?
Well, whether or not he had a bad game or if this will be a normal occurrence, it is hard to judge a rookie playing in his first game as an NBA player.
Now, the very next night, Lonzo proved to the world that his play has come back and is here to stay. He produced a great performance against the Boston Celtics, scoring only 11 points ( on 5 for 13 shooting), but he produced 11 rebounds and 11 assists. The crowd was absolutely mesmerized by Lonzo’s court vision and ball-handling, producing the ooh’s and aah’s from the crowd the entire game. Now, to put this into perspective, the stadium where the Lakers play for Summer League has not been filled since Summer League, and the moment that Lonzo entered the stage, the stadium was packed (every ticket was sold as well). This puts the NBA in an amazing position. Anyway, Lonzo didn’t have the best performance of the game (that goes to Jayson Tatum, who produced 27 points and 11 rebounds), but the impact he now has on the Lakers organization and the NBA is colossal. Every Lakers game will be filled to the brim to watch Lonzo Ball play.
To conclude the article, Lonzo has had a good Summer League performance so far. He isn’t my personal pick for Rookie of the Year, but he may get into that spot in the future. Please welcome the conductor of the NBA hype train, Lonzo Ball.