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May 25, 2017 | 11:13 am EDT Update
In a radio interview Thursday, Celtics general manager Danny Ainge said prized point guard Lonzo Ball informed the team he won’t workout for them prior to the Draft. With that in mind, it appears increasingly likely the Celtics will select guard Markelle Fultz out of Washington with the top selection.
“We tried to get [Ball] in. We don’t deal with [Ball’s camp] all that much. They didn’t show up at the combine, which is very common — many of the top 10 or 15 players don’t show up for the [NBA’s] combine. … We just tried to get him in for a workout and they politely said no,” Ainge told the “Toucher and Rich” program while Boston’s front office staff traveled for a draft workout in New York that included Duke’s Harry Giles and Kentucky’s Malik Monk.
There have been questions about whether Ball would want to play in Boston, considering his Los Angeles roots. His father, LaVar Ball, hasn’t been shy about his desire to see his boy play for the hometown squad. “I want him to be a Laker. But that’s just my opinion,” he said on Dale & Holley with Keefe in March. “It’s not about me liking [the Celtics] or disliking them. It’s just that we’re west coast guys,” he said. “I’d love for him to stay on the west coast where his brothers can see him all of the time. We’re a real big family. That’s just the only difference.”
Ball’s father, LaVar, has previously said that his son would only work out for the Los Angeles Lakers. “That’s all we working out for is the Lakers,” LaVar Ball told Lakers Nation earlier this month. “Just the Lakers. There’s nobody else that we need to work out for.”
During an appearance on FS1’s “The Herd with Colin Cowherd” last week, LaVar Ball explained his preference for Lonzo to play for the Lakers over the Celtics but said, ultimately, he’d be OK if Boston drafted Lonzo. “If Lonzo goes to Boston, he turns into a 2. … Lonzo’s always going to be a point guard. He can play any position, but his true position is point guard and Boston has so many guards, you don’t need that guy,” LaVar Ball said. Later he added: “Here’s the thing: I prefer Zo to go to the Lakers, but if Boston were to choose him and Lonzo wants to play basketball, then guess what, he doesn’t care where he goes.”