Luke Walton Tells Jim Rome LaVar Ball to Be Closed Out of Lonzo's Lakers Workout

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJune 7, 2017

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 25:  LaVar Ball, father of Lonzo Ball #2 of the UCLA Bruins, watches the game against the USC Trojans at Galen Center on January 25, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton said Tuesday that LaVar Ball will not be allowed to attend Lonzo Ball's workout with the team Wednesday.

On the Jim Rome Show (h/t USA Today's Andrew Joseph), Walton said Ball's father wouldn't be permitted at the workout but that he was welcome to join them for dinner the night before:

"Absolutely. If he wanted to come to the dinner. I think the workout is something that we'll keep the doors closed on, but the dinner, I think he would definitely make the dinner more entertaining. He's definitely welcomed to join us for that one."

Walton also discussed the elder Ball's outspokenness and said it wouldn't be a concern for him if L.A. selects Lonzo with the No. 2 overall pick:

"No, I wouldn't [be concerned about LaVar's opinionated nature]. We're in the NBA, to me, that's not an issue. Parents are always gonna have their opinions. They're gonna be outspoken at times. As you know, Jim, I have a very outspoken father myself. It doesn't bother me. If we were to draft him, we're gonna coach him. He's gonna be part of our team. He's gonna be part of our family. And we'll go from there. This is the NBA. We'll keep the team where it needs to be. We'll not let outside things like that influence us on whether or not we pick the kid."

Bleacher Report's Kevin Ding reported Ball will work out with the Lakers in the morning and have lunch with Jeanie, Joey and Jesse Buss. Magic Johnson, Rob Pelinka and Luke Walton were present at dinner with Ball on Tuesday night, per Ding.

LaVar has been vocal about only wanting his son to play for the Lakers, and he told Ryan Ward of Lakers Nation in May that the Lakers were the only team Lonzo would work out for.

Provided the Boston Celtics select Washington guard Markelle Fultz with the No. 1 overall pick as is widely expected, the door will be open for L.A. to nab Ball at No. 2.

He would join a backcourt already inhabited by D'Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson, but Ball brings a do-everything skill set that the Lakers could use on the heels of a season at UCLA that saw him average 14.6 points, 7.6 assists and 6.0 rebounds per game.


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