Walton called his assistant coaching gig at the University of Memphis a “good experience” before the NBA’s lockout shortened season started in 2011. But Walton also sensed the job’s limitations. “I didn’t get to spend as much time working with the players as I would have liked,” Walton said before the Lakers’ 103-100 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday at FedEx Forum. “A lot of it was spending it in the office, recruiting and things like that. It was a good experience to see that side of it. But as far as working with the younger guys, I don’t think how it’s set up right now is best for a lot of these young players.”
So, Walton’s four-month stint as a Tigers assistant under former University of Arizona teammate Josh Pastner provided clarity on his interest in the coaching profession in a different way. “The time I spent and was allowed to be with the players on the court, I really loved,” Walton said. “But because of all the other stuff, it was nice to realize the NBA was probably the way I wanted to go instead of college.”
Jordan Heck: Long time Michael Jordan rival Isiah Thomas held up a Crying Jordan head during Indiana’s win over North Carolina. pic.twitter.com/zqySNXtJN1
Freshman sensation Lonzo Ball wasted no time taking college hoops by storm … and now former UCLA star Baron Davis is showing a LOT of love for the young hooper … proclaiming Ball a future NBA All-Star. TMZ Sports spoke with B.D. about the freshman phenom — who leads the NCAA in assists (9 per game) as a freshman — and it’s clear Baron expects nothing but greatness. “He will definitely be a UCLA Hall of Famer,” Davis says. “He’s following right after Russ (Westbrook) and all the rest of the great point guards.”
Julius Erving was unable to attend Saturday’s win, but Jules said that when his dad attends his games, they have a “quick talk” afterward about things he did well “and the things I could have improved on.” “After that we just go on normally,” Jules said. “He’s not the father that wants me to be in the NBA or pushes me to do this or that; he really isn’t. He wants me to work hard at whatever.”
Collins said that Jules Erving has recently started to receive interest from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Kennesaw State and Georgia State. Erving said that, for him, playing in college depends on whether he receives a Division I scholarship offer. “If it’s not D-I, I don’t think I’d do it,” Erving said. “I’d probably just focus on my books. That’s the biggest thing for me right now. “I have a 3.5 GPA and I’m trying to get it higher. I want to go into business with my dad. “
Ivan Rabb, however, prides himself in not being a follower and believes he did what was best for him by returning to Cal rather than going to the NBA last spring. “A lot of families out there may try to push their kids to not only go to the NBA, but maybe even go to a certain school. And, I would just say for everybody, make your own decisions, because you’re the one that has to live with it,” Rabb, 19, told The Undefeated.