Lonzo Ball has been rumored to be a trade candidate since last summer.
Last summer, there were rumblings of Paul George and Kawhi Leonard coming to the Lakers and Lonzo Ball being part of that move.
This season, the Orlando Magic and New Orleans Pelicans were suitors in a potential three-team trade to acquire Anthony Davis.
“At the end of the day, you can only control the things that you can control,” Ball told The Athletic’s Shams Charania.
“If I get traded, then I get traded. But I’m going to be ready to go. The goal is to be the best player I can for whichever team.”
Lonzo sounds like a pro.
“He is a young guy,” retired NBA player, Sam Perkins told me on the Scoop B & Reg Podcast.
“And he feels because Anthony Davis gave a list of the teams he wanted to be traded to, Ball feels he can do the same.”
The fourth pick in the the 1984 NBA Draft, Perkins was USA Basketball’s Male Athlete of the Year that same year and spent 17 years in the NBA with notable stints with the Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Lakers, Dallas Mavericks and the Seattle SuperSonics.
Big Smooth averaged 11 points and 6 rebounds during his career and had solid roles during a couple of NBA Finals appearances with the Lakers, Sonics and the Pacers.
Perkins sees the shift in today’s NBA culture and Lonzo Ball.
“He is in his second year, hasn’t done much,” Perkins said of Ball.
“He had a couple games, but he hasn’t done much and that is where the conflict of the personalities are bigger than the game. There are legends out here that have more tenure than you, but don’t have your ability.”
What’s next for Ball?
Per USA Today’s Lonzo Wire: It’s been first-hand experience in the harsh reality of the business side of the NBA. Ball has largely taken the trade rumors in stride, realizing that it is a business.
There are many things to point at for why the narrative on Ball’s future with the Lakers changed. Los Angeles shifting its focus to star-chasing after building through the draft for many years. Leonard was the first target even before landing James. After landing him and not landing Paul George, the Lakers were naturally going to look for a second star.
The Lakers’ star-chasing isn’t going to stop unless the team lands one this summer. Should the team miss out on a star like Leonard, Kevin Durant or even Jimmy Butler, Ball and Brandon Ingram will be put back into trade discussions.