The Los Angeles Lakers knew when they drafted Lonzo Ball with the second overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft that his father, LaVar Ball, would likely cause some off-the-court drama.
On Tuesday, the elder Ball did just that.
Amidst the news that the Lakers were working to find a way to bring All-Star big man Anthony Davis to Los Angeles, LaVar Ball appeared on the Doug & Wolf radio show to throw a handful of Lakers players and personnel under the bus.
“Luke Walton was the worst coach he ever had,” LaVar Ball said of his son’s head coach. “It was Magic [Johnson] who said he was going to be the dang face of the franchise. But Magic ain’t doing no coaching. And the only person to kill Lonzo is the coach pulling him out and not having no confidence in him. Everyone who’s had confidence in Lonzo just let him go and let him win. That’s what he does. He wins. Luke Walton turned him into a loser. A loser’s mentality is like, ‘Oh, he’s young, he’ll get it.’ Instead of just letting him go out there and do what he does.
“The Lakers gave my boy that losing attitude.”
It’s a pretty outrageous claim to make, but then again LaVar Ball has made an entire career out of being outrageous. So far this season, Lonzo Ball is averaging 9.9 points, 5.4 assists, and 5.3 rebounds per game. All averages are lower than those of his rookie season.
Despite that, LaVar Ball also took the time on air to criticize his son’s teammates.
“I tell you what: Lonzo makes everybody better,” he said. “That’s what he’s always did all his life. You don’t even hear of [Kyle] Kuzma if Lonzo don’t make him in the Las Vegas Summer League. You see every time Kuzma plays by himself? [Josh] Hart, [Brandon] Ingram by himself? They don’t get nothing. They look raggedy.”
He also criticized Davis.
“AD is good!” Lavar said. “But he’s not a winner. How many playoff games has he won? He’s been in the league a long time, there’s a difference between players and winners.”
Davis is currently averaging 29.3 points, 13.3 rebounds, and 2.6 blocks per game. Given those numbers, any fan of basketball can conclude that he is not the reason why his current team has struggled to find lasting success.
In the end, all that matters about LaVar Ball’s words is that they could impact any trade talks between the Lakers and New Orleans Pelicans.
Even if Lonzo Ball doesn’t end up getting moved in a trade for Davis, incidents like these seem to indicate that his days in Los Angeles could be numbered.