Lonzo Ball Has Near-Triple-Double in Lakers' Summer League Win vs. Nets

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistJuly 16, 2017

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 15:  Lonzo Ball #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives against Rondae Hollis-Jefferson #24 of the Brooklyn Nets during the 2017 Summer League at the Thomas & Mack Center on July 15, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Lonzo Ball flirted with a third triple-double Saturday night in the Los Angeles Lakers' 115-106 Las Vegas Summer League win over the Brooklyn Nets at the Thomas & Mack Center. 

In 34 minutes, Ball finished with 14 points (4-of-12 shooting, 1-of-3 from three), nine rebounds and seven assists, helping the Lakers punch a ticket to Sunday's Sin City semifinals. 

As was the case in his last two outings, Ball looked to pass first. 

That much was clear in the first quarter, when he hit Kyle Kuzma with a three-quarters-court dime for an easy layup: 

However, Ball didn't experience the same success on the scoring front after dropping 16 points on the Cleveland Cavaliers and 36 against the Philadelphia 76ers earlier in the week. 

Although he worked his way into double figures, the No. 2 overall pick couldn't establish a rhythm and air-balled a pair of first-half attempts as he started 1-of-4 from the field. 

Shots started to fall with a bit more regularity in the second half, including a slick mid-range floater midway through the fourth quarter, but it was Ball's vision that kept the Lakers' offense flowing, as Lakers.com's Mike Trudell observed: 

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The NBA's official Twitter account provided one example of Ball's selflessness paying dividends when he picked up a clutch hockey assist in the fourth quarter: 

Lonzo's sneakers also commanded considerable attention on a night when his performance left something to be desired. 

After he laced up in Nikes and Adidas rather than his signature Big Baller Brand ZO2s over the past two games, Ball decided to rock Stephen Curry's signature Under Armour kicks Saturday: 

That wasn't an accident. 

"It's making a statement to the brands of what they could have had with an open mind," his father, LaVar Ball, told ESPN.com's Darren Rovell prior to the game. "The players are the brand ambassadors. The brand is nothing without the players."

With the Lakers moving on to play the the Dallas Mavericks and No. 9 overall pick Dennis Smith Jr. on Sunday, Ball's shoe selection will undoubtedly be under the microscope again as the Purple and Gold eye a berth in the Las Vegas Summer League title tilt.