The Los Angeles Lakers have apparently had enough of LaVar Ball’s sniping. The team’s front office reportedly sat the patriarch of the Ball family down and asked him to tone down his public criticism of the organization and head coach Luke Walton.
The meeting happened sometime in the past few weeks and was called by president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka. The point of the gathering was to foster a more positive atmosphere around Lonzo Ball, which would hopefully cause fewer distractions for him.
LaVar confirmed the meeting to ESPN Tuesday night saying the following:
“It was the best thing, man. Everybody’s going to try to make it an ego thing, like I’m trying to tell them what to do or they’re trying to tell me to tone it down. It’s not about that. It’s about coming together and to get a solution to this problem.
“It may sound crazy to other people, but I really just want the best for Lonzo, and the best for Lonzo is going to be what’s best for the organization. Because if everybody winning, we good.”
Ball has criticized the way Walton has used his son on a number of occasions.
Walton has shown flaws as an in-game coach so far this season, particularly late in games. That said, the Lakers are 10-16 after an overtime loss to the New York Knicks Tuesday night and the team has been so much better that people expected.
Players like Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, Larry Nance Jr., Julius Randle and Jordan Clarkson have all been far better than expected. Ball has shown flashes and likely will improve as well over time once he fixes his shot (which won’t happen until the offseason).
Walton isn’t the problem, the Lakers are just a young team that has played like it at times. LaVar Ball needs to show the same patience the rest of the team’s fans are.