Lavar Ball has made no secret of the fact that he wanted his son to play in the bright lights of Los Angeles. "I'll have another hat on that say, 'I told you so, '" Lavar said on ESPN's NBA Draft program. "You look to your right, there's some jerseys hanging on that wall", Johnson said at a press conference in the team's El Segundo practice facility. Ball may wind up living up to expectations, he may even one day be worthy of comparisons to Brady and Rodgers - though passing in the National Football League and NBA are hardly equivalent. "After they got the third pick, we tried to schedule something for me to get out there".
Lonzo Ball, to his credit, appeared to take the barbs in stride.
The Lakers have missed the playoffs for four straight seasons, their longest postseason drought in franchise history, and are coming off a 26-56 season, the third-worst record in the National Basketball Association. He has the point guard skills that should translate to him being an excellent leader on the court for the Lakers.
"He really rose up on the draft board", said ESPN analyst Jay Bilas on the ESPN broadcast. "He has the talent to be an All-Star".
But the Lakers, under new leadership with Showtime patriarch Magic Johnson taking the helm, is hoping a more successful era is set to unfold in the City of Angels, with Ball in control of the offense as Los Angeles' main playmaker.
"That will make it more challenging a little bit, but I think that every top draft pick that comes in has a target on their back", Walton said.
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It was pointed out that the Lakers are putting as much pressure on Ball as they have perhaps placed on any rookie.
The 6-foot-10 big man was the fourth Big Ten player taken on Thursday. The tide has turned. Players like Paul George or LeBron James who may be considering Los Angeles don't want to be the only superstar on the team.
He should spend some time with the Lakers' G-League affiliate, the South Bay Lakers, for a good chunk of the season.
That moment destroyed the relationship of D'Angelo Russell and his Los Angeles Lakers teammates for the rest of the season.
Pelinka also believes Magic himself is an irresistible asset.
Remember, Magic and Pelinka are new to this. I think they have enough talent.
Thursday night's NBA Draft was expected to present a more exciting crop of future NBA players than a year ago and had been lauded as holding the best potential draft class in recent memory. On top of that, Lopez is set to enter the previous year of his deal worth $22.6 million in the 2017-18 campaign that could almost allow them to ink to max contract players in free agency next summer.
With Magic Johnson serving as the general manager for the Lakers, the 19-year-old Ball expects to learn valuable insights from the five-time National Basketball Association champion.
"Just leave me one or two records, OK?" "He obviously loves him, and that's what you want out of a father, so I'm not overly concerned with that".