LaVar Ball was magnanimous in his praise of Markelle Fultz, but he may have had an ulterior motive.
In an interview Wednesday on FS1's Undisputed, Ball called Fultz "the perfect pick" for the Boston Celtics, who won the 2017 NBA draft lottery, and said he doesn't want his son, Lonzo, to wind up in Boston:
It's an about-face from LaVar, who said in March that Lonzo should be the No. 1 pick:
Now that the Celtics have the first pick and the Los Angeles Lakers are selecting second overall, LaVar openly admitted he believes Lonzo will wind up in Los Angeles.
LaVar is so confident, he confirmed to Lakers Nation's Ryan Ward that Lonzo will conduct predraft workouts with the Lakers only.
"That's all we working out for is the Lakers," LaVar said. "Just the Lakers. There's nobody else that we need to work out for."
Lonzo would be a marketing dream for the Lakers. He's a native of Chino Hills, California, and starred for one season with the UCLA Bruins. Ball's arrival would undoubtedly drive fan interest in a Lakers team that's likely another year or two away from contention.
However, it's far from a foregone conclusion. ESPN.com's Ramona Shelburne reported the Lakers will have a small handful of players come in for workouts, a list that includes Ball, Fultz, Josh Jackson, Jayson Tatum and De'Aaron Fox.
Bleacher Report's Kevin Ding also spoke to sources who said, "The Lakers have not put Ball on a pedestal as their potential savior."
If the Lakers opt against selecting Lonzo, then LaVar's firm commitment to the franchise could backfire in a big way.