LaVar Ball Says the Lakers "Don't want to play" for Luke Walton

Luke Walton and Magic Johnson
LaVar Ball: Lakers coach Luke Walton 'doesn't have control' of team
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08 January, 2018

"I'm fine with it", he said, per Ganguli. "Even if you bring in a LeBron or a [Paul] George, he can't coach them guys", LaVar told ESPN. It was the Lakers' ninth straight loss. "Luke doesn't have control of the team no more".

Those comments put Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball in the hard position of both defending his father and his head coach.

Ball was asked directly if he likes Walton as his head coach. We are going to play for him.

"My only concern with any of it is for Zo [Lonzo]. Playing like garbage. Something I need to address and fix".

"That's how we're going to win games", Ball said.

"That is just his opinion", Lonzo Ball said. He has coached me his whole life. So, he is definitely going to have a strong opinion about it.

Lakers executives met with LaVar Ball on November 29 to ask him to tone down comments he had made questioning Walton's rotations and overall usage of his son, the No. 2 pick in June's draft. But LaVar had the Lakers - more specifically, head coach Luke Walton - on his mind Saturday in an interview with ESPN's Jeff Goodman.

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Clearly, LaVar is a father who wants to have input on how his sons are coached, who they play with, and what they do on the court. "What is he gonna tell them?"

Ball believes the issue is that Walton is "too young" and is unable to connect with his players, basing this statement on everyone's body language.

The Lakers did not immediately make available general manager Rob Pelinka, who attended their Sunday morning shootaround at Staples Center.

"My job is to play basketball".

Walton disregarded the constant criticism coming from his star rookie's father, "I'm fine with it, it doesn't both me".

Ball said you can see Walton "doesn't have control of the team" and he is no longer connecting with the players, citing the way players react to substitutions as proof of this.

"I don't think so", Ball responded following Sunday morning shootaround when asked point blank if he thought Walton had lost the locker room. "They're 100 percent behind and supporting what we're doing".


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