The Los Angeles Lakers have a lot of new faces this season and are spending training camp getting used to sharing the floor with each other, and especially getting used to catching passes from Lonzo Ball.
The rookie point guard already showed off his dishing skills during the Las Vegas Summer League, where he earned MVP honors, and now it’s his Lakers teammates who have to be prepared for his lightning-quick playing style.
Ball’s team reportedly went undefeated in three games during the Lakers’ recent scrimmage, and both teammates and coaches alike are already raving about their new floor general’s ability to hit the open man. Power forward Julius Randle was wowed by the court vision that Ball possesses.
“Zo plays a great pace. His vision is obviously second to none, and his understanding of the game. So he looked amazing.”
Ever since his high school days at Chino Hills, Ball has had a knack for zipping the ball across the court to open teammates, hitting them perfectly in stride for open looks.
It’s this playing style that have many believing that Ball will be the lure that helps bring free agents back to Los Angeles. With the personnel that the Lakers have, Ball could be the piece that unlocks a fun, high-octane offense.
“Starting with the point guard and the way he moves the ball and throws it ahead,” head coach Luke Walton said. “You look at some of the wings we have. Brandon Ingram. They signed [Kentavious Caldwell-Pope], and Jordan Clarkson. These guys can fly up and down the court. And we have a point guard that’s really skilled at hitting people on the move like that.”
Of course, despite the potential flashed by Ball and the other young Lakers, growing pains should be expected. It takes time to adapt to the NBA game, and that will certainly hold true for the young Lakers.
Still, for the first time in a long time, it feels as though the Lakers are building something real. If the kids can hit the ground running and help attract a pair of major free agents next summer Los Angeles could find themselves back in the mix sooner rather than later.