The Los Angeles Lakers were steadfast throughout the pre-draft process that Lonzo Ball’s outspoken father LaVar wouldn’t affect whether or not they would select him with the No. 2 pick. It sounds like so far he hasn’t given them any reason to regret that stance.
“He's been great. Every interaction has been nothing but positive,” Lakers head coach Luke Walton told Chris Palmer of Spectrum Sportsnet of the Big Baller Dad.
It’s important to note here that Walton and LaVar would’ve had very little to disagree over so far. With Lonzo balling out in Las Vegas Summer League and no real reason for any other contentiousness over the summer, it’s been all smooth sailing aboard the good ship Lakers. The real test of whether or not LaVar can stay in his lane won’t come until the regular season, when the younger Ball hits a rookie wall.
Ball has told Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson that he’s done coaching Lonzo, that he’s taught him all that he can teach him, but it’s easy to say that when you’re son has his Lakers dream on the line. It could prove less simple to stick too when Lonzo struggles a bit in the NBA, as all rookies are wont to do from time to time.
As Walton’s comments make clear, the early returns have been promising, as was LaVar’s positivity in the wake of Lonzo’s shooting struggles following his first game of summer league. Whether or not LaVar’s words continue not cause problems for the Lakers is worth keeping an eye on, but for now it seems like the Lakers were probably right not to be too worried about interference from LaVar once Lonzo was in the NBA.