"They're going to come after him," Luke Walton said, per Bill Oram of the Orange County Register. "That's what people in this league do. They come after young players, and when there's young players a lot of media and a hype around them, they really come after them."
Ball enters the league with far more fanfare than the typical rookie—even the ones who attended powerhouse basketball programs such as his UCLA.
His father, LaVar, has been a primary talking point throughout the basketball world since his son laced it up for the Bruins thanks to his outlandish statements and constant readiness to be in front of a camera. What's more, the entire Ball family has been on their Ball in the Family reality show, further exposing the Lakers rookie to the public eye.
Things won't be easy from the start with a matchup against Patrick Beverley.
"If any players are going to try to make a statement against Ball, you might expect it to be Beverley, a first-team all-defensive guard and an all-word annoyance whose own path to the NBA was a far cry from that of Ball," Oram wrote.
As if matching up with Beverley wasn't enough, Walton said the sprained ankle Ball suffered on Oct. 2 has impacted his conditioning.
Still, it's not as if Ball doesn't have the talent to back up the hype. He was the No. 2 overall pick in the draft after he led UCLA to the Sweet 16 with his steady control of the game's pace, impressive passing skills and shooting ability.
He tallied 14.6 points, 7.6 assists, 6.0 rebounds and 1.8 steals a night in his one collegiate season and won the Las Vegas Summer League MVP before preseason. Now it's time to see if he can deliver when the games count in the standings.
🔥 Top Videos from Around B/R 🔥
Artist Paints Over LeBron's 'King of LA' Mural
Did LeBron Really Skip His Own Pizza Party?
Watch Boogie's 🔥from Last Season 📽️
LeBron's Top 10 Plays of 2017-18
15-Year Anniversary of 2003 Draft
2 Years Ago Today, Cavs Came Back from Down 3-1
Draft Prospects Following in Families' NBA Footsteps
Giannis' Offseason from Posterizer to Taste Tester
Embiid Is Having Himself a Summer
New Dubs Celebrating 1st Title in Style
Why LeBron Needs to Leave Cleveland
'The Wheelchair Game' Was 10 Years Ago Today
Embiid Set Twitter on Fire Again
Four Years Ago, Lance Went Viral
Ayton Has Boogie-Like Potential 👀
15 Yrs Ago, LBJ Inked the Biggest Rookie Shoe Deal Ever
Chinese Fans Keep It 100 with LBJ Nicknames
Sixers Welcomed Meek Home in Style 👀