Lavar Ball, the father of standout UCLA freshman Lonzo Ball, drew the sports world’s ire on Saturday when he appeared on KCUB Sports Radio 1290 and said, “my son will only play for the Lakers.”
How could he say such an audacious thing? basketball fans asked. He should be grateful his son could play anywhere in the NBA!
As you might expect, Ball has since walked back his comment. He says his quote was taken out of context.
“All I said was that my boy is going to play for the Lakers, and I’m going to speak it into existence,” Ball said, according to ESPN. “I want him to be a Laker, but I wasn’t saying he’s only going to play for the Lakers."
It sort of makes sense, right? Wishful thinking. Optimism. Trying to speak his desired future into reality.
“I’m not trying to say he won’t play for a different team,” Ball continued. “But I’d like him to play for the Lakers because it’s home, and I’d love him to learn from Magic [Johnson]. He’s the best guard ever to me, and nobody better for Lonzo to learn from than Magic Johnson.”
No one is arguing about whether Los Angeles would be the Ball family’s ideal location. Lonzo’s two younger brothers, LaMelo and LiAngelo, have both committed to play for UCLA. It’d be great, I’m sure, for all of them to be able to attend each other’s games.
The Lakers could be in position to select Lonzo Ball, but still—there’s a good chance another team snags him.
“All I do is go out and play basketball, man,” Lonzo told ESPN when asked about his father’s comments.
Nothing like a good sports cliché to diffuse the situation.