Lakers News: Derek Fisher Supports Luke Walton After LaVar Ball Criticism

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistFebruary 6, 2019

Derek Fisher, head coach of the WNBA Los Angeles Sparks, watches an NCAA college basketball game between UCLA and Oregon Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

Derek Fisher defended Luke Walton when asked about recent criticism of the Los Angeles Lakers coach from LaVar Ball.

"Luke is a great person, and he's a great basketball coach," the former Laker told TMZ Sports.

This comes after Ball ripped his son's coach on the Doug & Wolf radio show (via Jesse Owens of Yahoo Sports):

"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."

Lonzo Ball hasn't improved in his second year in the league, averaging 9.9 points and 5.4 assists per game and is now out with an ankle injury.

He has been mentioned as part of a trade package to acquire Anthony Davis from the New Orleans Pelicans, per Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times.

Meanwhile, the rest of the Lakers haven't done much better under Walton's watch. The team is 27-27 after a 42-point loss to the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday, and the coach is 88-130 in two-and-a-half seasons at the helm.

Still, Fisher, the head coach of the WNBA's Los Angeles Sparks, defended his former L.A. teammate while not revealing his real thoughts on the Ball family.


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