Lonnie Walker IV Sounds Off on His Future With Lakers

Lakers guard Lonnie Walker IV

Getty Lakers guard Lonnie Walker IV

During a November 25 interview with Dave McMenamin of ESPN, Lonnie Walker IV sounded off on his future with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Walker IV, who signed a one-year, $6.5 million deal with the Lakers in July, told McMenamin that he wants to be in Los Angeles past this season.

“I’m here for one year,” Walker IV told McMenamin. “I would love to be here for as long as I can. So what do I have to do to get to that point? Being disciplined, being engaged and just stacking the days and being the best I can be is something that’s going to get me there.”

The Lakers are only 8-12 on the season, but Walker IV has been a bright spot. The 23-year-old is averaging 16.6 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.9 assists while shooting 47.7% from the field, 36.3% from beyond the arc and 84.4% from the free-throw line. Walker IV is third on the Lakers in points per game and fourth in 3-point field goal percentage.

“He’s kind of filled that void of being another guy that we can lean on to score the basketball,” Lakers superstar Anthony Davis told McMenamin about Walker IV. “Score in bunches and just constantly try to learn and read the game as the season goes on.”

Gregg Popovich on Walker IV

Walker IV played the first four years of his career for San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, one of the greatest coaches in NBA history. Popovich told McMenamin that Walker IV “understands more the mental side of the game with each year that passes.”

“From Day 1, he was a great athlete. He’s got gifts that a lot of players don’t have in that regard,” Popovich said. “He always depended just on that athletic ability, it was so ridiculous compared to other people. But now he understands more the mental side of the game with each year that passes, and you can see that in his play.”

The Lakers have roughly $92 million in contracts committed for next season when the salary cap is projected to be around $134 million, per McMenamin. Los Angeles will have plenty of space to re-sign Walker IV, who is represented by Lucas Newton of Klutch Sports Group. Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis are represented by Rich Paul of Klutch Sports Group.

“I think his confidence is through the roof. The kid is phenomenal,” Lakers head coach Darvin Ham told McMenamin about Walker IV. “I just have a huge amount of trust and belief in him.”

Meditation Has Helped Walker IV

Walker IV picked up meditation years ago in high school working with Dr. Rick Neff, a sports psychologist who now heads Villanova University’s athletic programs. The Lakers guard told McMenamin that meditation has helped him significantly.

“I really feel like that’s one of the main reasons I’m playing so well,” Walker IV said. “It has genuinely transformed my mental state and my maturity level going onto that court. Once I’m done and I leave and I walk into the locker room, I feel like a different person. This ain’t Lonnie no more, this is, ‘It’s time to play.’ I ain’t got no friends on this other team.”

Walker IV becomes an unrestricted free agent this summer. The Miami product has career averages of 9.9 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists with the Spurs and Lakers.

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