Guess who’s back! The most notorious and controversial father in sports, LaVar Ball, is in the headlines again, as he spoke for ESPN LA and gave us some very spicy insight into his sons’ careers, especially Lonzo’s.
The March 25th Trade Deadline is approaching, and it seems LaVar and Lonzo would like a move to complete by then. In a phone interview ahead of his youngest son Lamelo playing his first game in LA, LaVar spoke about Lonzo’s situation and how he is frustrated with how the Pelicans are using him.
“No! No, he can’t stay in New Orleans. Come on, man. Come on, listen. … Lonzo’s always been a playmaker. Why are you trying to change him into a defensive specialist that stays in the corner and shoots 3s? And you’re trying to change Zion and Brandon Ingram who, all through their careers, have never been playmakers. Scorers! Now you want to put the ball in their hands and be playmakers?! … Go score the ball and do what you do and guess what? They’re gonna have a hard time trying to win every game if the playmaker ain’t making the right plays.”LaVar Ball, via ESPN LA
When asked if he thinks a trade is going down soon, LaVar simply responded.
“Oh, I don’t know what they’re gonna do. I don’t know what they’re gonna do. I hope he be traded, though. Here’s the thing: I don’t like watching him play like that.”LaVar Ball, via ESPN LA
After coming into the NBA with massive hype around his name, Lonzo has finally started to show some promise in his 4th season. The young point guard has revamped his jump shot and showed increased confidence in his abilities, resulting in him having a career year, averaging 14.2 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 5.6 assists per game.
Despite all that, LaVar seems to think that the Pelicans are holding back his potential. Lonzo came into the NBA labeled as a floor general that controls the team on the floor, but lately, he has become more of a 3&D guy, guarding the opposing best perimeter players and spotting up in the corner on offense. That has been the result of Stan Van Gundy making Ingram and Zion primary ball handlers.
I can understand where LaVar is coming from, as Lonzo could be even more productive if he had the ball more in his hands, but openly stating that Lonzo wants out could be very hurtful for him and his career. The fans in New Orleans and the Pelicans organization won’t like this a bit, and the rumors of Lonzo looking to sing with the Knicks in the offseason haven’t been helping.
The Pelicans are having a disappointing season, but the young core has a lot of promise. If they stick together, they could be very competitive soon, but they need buy-in from the entire roster for that to happen. We will have to wait and see if Lonzo shares his dad’s opinion, or is it just a classic LaVar media bomb.