Lonzo Ball just finished his rookie contract and has been in trade rumors almost every offseason. This one is no different. Where will he play next season? If the rumors are true, one thing is certain – Ball is going to a big market.
Lonzo in LA – sweeter the second time around?
The L.A. Lakers got knocked out of the Playoffs in the first round. It’s one of LeBron’s earliest postseason exits in his career. Rob Pelinka knows he has to improve the roster, and a capable ball-handler is on the top of the list. Lonzo Ball fits the description.
The Lakers drafted Ball in 2017 with the 2nd pick. The franchise hoped the youngster would form a young core with Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, and Julius Randle. However, things didn’t work out for the best, and Lonzo was shipped out to the New Orleans Pelicans. Ingram and Randle were traded as well. The Lakersreplaced Ball with Rajon Rondo and it worked wonders. Rondo was crucial on their Orlando Bubble path to the Larry O’Brien trophy. However, when Rondo did not sign an extension, L.A. signed Denis Schroeder. The German guard struggled, and it resulted in an early playoff exit. According to Mark Stein, the Lakers are eyeing their former no.2 pick for the spot.
Ball has matured and developed a decent outside shot, something he needed to work on while with the Lakers. If Ball gets back to play in Purple and Gold, the team can use his on-ball pressure defense and pass-first mentality.
Lonzo in MSG – playing for Thibs
New York Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau likes to preach defense. His teams are known for great defenses to a point where his players’ body sometimes breaks down due to usage. If the Knicks want a potential replacement for Derrick Rose, Lonzo Ball might be the perfect choice.
Both Rose and Ball play hard on defense and they possess high intelligence as point guards. They know when to attack and use their strengths to their advantage. Getting Ball to pair up with Julius Randle and other Knicks stars could be the start of forming a young core that could compete in the next few years.
The Knicks will have the cap space to outright sign Lonzo. If they make a competitive offer to the restricted free agent, the Pelicans might just let him go.
Lonzo in Windy City – fastbreaks with Zach LaVine
Same as the Knicks, the Bulls could sign Lonzo into cap space. Ball is a better facilitator, and court leader than current Chicago Bulls guard Coby White. White is a gifted scorer, but with Zach LaVine in the team, the team needs a court facilitator and an able defender, more than a scorer at the PG position.
This rumor has been going around for some time now, so the Bulls are obviously very interested. Lonzo and LaVine running the fastbreak sounds like attractive basketball to me. Could the people of Chicago finally have a reason to feel excited about basketball again?
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