LaVar Ball, the father of Los Angeles Lakers rookie point guard Lonzo Ball, appeared on ESPN’s First Take Wednesday morning and had some bold predictions for the Lakers this season, saying they will win 50+ games.
This isn’t the first bold prediction or statement LaVar has made as it began when Lonzo was in college at UCLA and he said that his son is already better than the reigning two-time NBA MVP at the time, Stephen Curry.
While LaVar does talk about his son a lot, Lonzo has been able to live up to LaVar’s hype so far as he led UCLA to a 31-5 record a year after going 15-17.
After being drafted second overall by the Lakers Lonzo led them to their first ever Las Vegas Summer League Championship in July, taking home MVP honors. Lonzo changed the entire style that the Lakers play with in the Summer League, getting his teammates involved and constantly pushing the pace to get easy buckets in transition.
If Lonzo is able to have that type of impact in an actual NBA game remains to be seen though as he has never played against that level of competition.
50 wins may be a tall task for Lonzo and the Lakers as they went just 26-56 last season and haven’t reached the playoffs since the 2012-13 season. Additionally, the Western Conference is loaded this season after stars like Jimmy Butler, Paul George and Paul Millsap all moved west so the Lakers winning 50 games may not be realistic this season.
But with promising young players like Lonzo, Brandon Ingram, Julius Randle, Kyle Kuzma and Larry Nance Jr. in addition to the offseason acquisitions of Brook Lopez and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, the Lakers should be much improved this season and could figure into the playoff picture if everything goes right.