FILE PHOTO: Mar 4, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; New Orleans Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball (2) makes an attempt a soar shot within the third quarter towards the Miami Warmth on the Smoothie King Heart. /Chuck Cook dinner-USA TODAY Sports activities/File Photograph
In sifting by the rumors surrounding Ben Simmons’ imminent departure from Philadelphia, reporter Marc Stein discovered one fascinating nugget that emerged from the Los Angeles Lakers. No, not that Simmons can be heading to Hollywood, however relatively that the Lakers are concerned with reacquiring former prime draft decide Lonzo Ball.
In Stein’s most up-to-date report on his Substack, he outlined the Lakers’ need so as to add a playmaker to the Anthony Davis-LeBron James duo, and that Ball’s title was floated as a chance.
“Anticipate to ultimately hear of them looking for potential pathways, nonetheless obstacle-strewn they’d be, to reacquiring restricted free agent-to-be Lonzo Ball for that cause,” Stein stated.
Given the Lakers’ present wage cap inflexibility, such a transfer would possibly necessitate going by New Orleans immediately — the very group the Lakers traded Ball to within the Anthony Davis deal in 2019. That’s as a result of Ball is a restricted free agent this summer season, and whereas the Pelicans is probably not ready to match a max contract, they’d have the ability to match a deal that is available in decrease.
May that imply a sign-and-trade is within the offing?
The Lakers chosen Ball second general within the 2017 NBA draft. He began 95 of 99 video games he performed for them in his first two NBA seasons earlier than being shipped away within the Davis commerce.
Ball, for his half, knowledgeable the media in Could he’d love to remain in New Orleans going ahead.
“That’s a dialog between me and my agent transferring ahead. However clearly I might like to be again,” Ball stated. “I constructed a bond right here with the coaches and the teammates who’re right here. I undoubtedly wouldn’t thoughts coming again in any respect.”
In March, father LaVar Ball stated in a radio interview forward of the NBA commerce deadline that his son wished out of New Orleans, however Lonzo has by no means indicated as a lot.
Ball performed in 55 video games (all begins) in 2020-21 and completed with averages of 14.6 factors (a profession excessive), 5.7 assists, 4.8 rebounds and 1.5 steals. In his four-year profession with the Lakers and Pelicans, Ball has averaged 11.7 factors, 6.4 assists and 5.8 rebounds.
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