After being mostly out of the spotlight earlier in the 2018-19 NBA season, LaVar Ball, the outspoken father of former No. 2 overall pick Lonzo Ball, is back from criticizing the Los Angeles Lakers, specifically Coach Luke Walton. The elder ball offered fresh criticisms to Walton as his son’s name continues to surface in trade rumors linking the Lakers to New Orleans Pelicans superstar Anthony Davis.
In a recent appearance on Doug & Wolf radio show in Arizona (transcribed by Bleacher Report), LaVar Ball called Coach Luke Walton the “worst coach” Lonzo Ball ever had. LaVar also accused Walton of turning his son into a “loser.”
“Luke Walton was the worst coach he ever had. It was Magic [Johnson] who said he was going to be the dang face of the franchise. But Magic ain’t doing no coaching. And the only person to kill Lonzo is the coach pulling him out and not having no confidence in him. Everyone who’s had confidence in Lonzo just let him go and let him win. That’s what he does. He wins. Luke Walton turned him into a loser. A loser’s mentality is like, ‘Oh, he’s young, he’ll get it.’ Instead of just letting him go out there and do what he does.”
LaVar Ball isn't the only person that thinks his son would be a good fit in Phoenix. https://t.co/Z2ePY8tvAs— azcentral (@azcentral) February 5, 2019
LaVar Ball is one of the people who’s urging the Lakers to fire Luke Walton as head coach, believing that he does not have what it takes to lead the Purple and Gold back to title contention. LaVar always has something to say to Walton whenever Lonzo receives lesser playing time or is sitting on the bench in crucial situations. LaVar insists that his son is the type of player that can make his teammates better, citing the improvement of the performances of Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, and Josh Hart when they shared the court with Lonzo.
With the Lakers including Lonzo Ball in the trade package to acquire Anthony Davis before the February NBA trade deadline, LaVar Ball also has some words for the Pelicans superstar. The elder Ball agreed that Davis is “good” but he does not consider him as a “winner,” saying that the All-Star big man hasn’t won much playoff games since being selected as the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.
When the reports about the Lakers-Pelicans trade negotiation surfaced, LaVar Ball publicly stated that they aren’t interested in letting Lonzo Ball play in New Orleans and wanted him to be traded to a third team without an established point guard. LaVar named the Phoenix Suns as one of their preferred trade destinations. However, as of now, it is highly likely that Lonzo will finish the 2018-19 NBA season with the Lakers. The Lakers reportedly pulled out from the trade negotiation after the Pelicans ask for more trade assets in return for Anthony Davis.