LaMelo Ball Rumors

All NBA Players
#0
LaMelo Ball
Position: -
Born: 08/22/01
Height: 6-7 / 2.01
Weight:181 lbs. / 82.1 kg.
This is where things get a little interesting for the Hawks. There are some folks inside the organization who firmly believe Ball is the best prospect in this draft class, and it’s not close, and there are others who are against taking him because of the fit with Young. Particularly, the defensive end of the floor scares them because they aren’t good on that end. From what I’ve heard, he’s not a total cross off for the Hawks, but a lot more evaluation and talks are going to have to happen to get everyone in agreement for him to be the choice.
Storyline: No. 1 pick
During his appearance on the Road Trippin’ podcast with Richard Jefferson, Channing Frye and Allie Clifton, LaVar Ball discussed why he felt LaMelo would be a good fit in New York. But in typical LaVar fashion, he also added a bit of spice at the end. “I know he likes the bright lights and the way New York is. They haven’t been good in I don’t know how long. So I’m like, ‘You know what, I don’t need my boy to follow nobody. I need him to create his own lane, create something that’s special over there.” Now, the place ain’t really got nothing to do with it. They have to have a new culture change over there to make this thing work. What I’m telling them is get Melo, you’re going to get Gelo and you’re going to see chemistry. And then find a way to get Zo and then you’ve got triple B’s, the Ball boys on broadway.”
With the 2020 NBA Draft still months away, speculation has already started to build about lottery prospect LaMelo Ball preferring to play for the New York Knicks. However, his manager, Jermaine Jackson, shot down that suggestion in a recent exchange on Instagram. In a screen shot of the conversation shared on Twitter by Knicks Fan TV, Jackson responds “that’s a lie” to a headline messaged to him about Ball preferring to play in New York.
If Ball was the pick for the Hawks, the roster construction around him and Young would have to be close to perfect. “It would be tough to guard,” Clark said. “If I had LaMelo Ball and Trae Young, I know what they can do. That’s in the bag. Teams are not going to be able to guard those guys. What do my next three players look like? Well, I know that I would want my wings to be bulldog defenders, and I need them to be shot-makers who don’t need the ball. I’d say 3-and-D guys, but you need someone who has the ability to put the ball on the floor, but he’s OK not touching the ball and being the creator. He needs to be a finisher above the rim and is just a dog defender who can make open shots. That would be my ideal guy.
As teams do their homework on players in the draft, there’s been a consistent theme about LaMelo Ball: multiple teams believe Ball and those in his circle prefer that he lands in New York. (Those teams have picks projected later in the first round than the Knicks, for what it’s worth.) The intel from the teams align with what LaVar Ball, LaMelo’s father, has said about his son and the Knicks and from previous reporting.
Instead, the draft lottery and the ensuing draft are both set for the fall. Plans have changed on the fly, but that hasn’t stopped Lonzo from giving LaMelo more advice on how to handle the changes. Lonzo shared what he’s told his brother when talking to the media on Monday. “I just told him to stay in the gym. I know he’s in Detroit working with (Jermaine Jackson) right now. As long as he gets his work in, regardless of what happens, the draft is going to be in October, I believe, so he should be ready by then. Then, whatever happens for next year, he should be good. I told him to stay in the gym and don’t worry about everything going on. “Thankfully, our family is healthy so that’s cool. He’s just doing his thing in Detroit right now.”
While LaVar, the father of top draft prospect LaMelo Ball, believes his son is the best player in the draft, he doesn’t believe the Warriors, with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, would be a good fit because they would ask the 18-year-old guard to fill a role and not be the star player LaVar believes him to be. “That’s the part I don’t like about Golden State,” LaVar said on the Say Less with Kaz podcast. “They got Klay and the other guys, and now you want to put Melo in that mix to say you got to follow these guys. Melo ain’t no follower. He don’t need to do what they do, let them do they thing.”
The Athletic’s James Edwards III, a beat writer for the Pistons, sat down with an NBA scout on Monday to discuss the prospects of the 2020 NBA Draft for Detroit. With a franchise’s glaring hole at the point guard position, the two discussed the point guards in the draft. When asked which point guard has the most star potential, the scout centered on Ball and when asked for his reasoning on it, he had the following to say: “I think he’ll be the best of the group. His size, vision, feel and instincts just add up to him being a pretty good player. Obviously, people have concerns about his shooting, but I think it’ll come around. I think he’ll be fine. I think he loves the game. He was pretty impressive down in Australia.”
LaMelo Ball’s bid to be a club owner in Australia hasn’t worked out. The American is expected to be a top pick in the upcoming NBA draft later this year. The Australian league – called the National Basketball League – has announced that a license for the Wollongong-based Hawks would go to a consortium led by ex-Philadelphia 76ers general manager Bryan Colangelo. Ball’s business manager, Jermaine Jackson, told ESPN in April that the ownership of the financially struggling club, where the 18-year-old American played last season, was a “done deal.”
With those five names in mind, I reached out to an NBA scout who specializes in college scouting. I asked him more than a handful of questions pertaining to the Pistons’ situation and this year’s crop of point-guard prospects. For each question, he was asked to pick which point guard would check a particular box. Some questions had more than one answer. In the end, it was pretty obvious who the scout felt reigned supreme among this group, but he did offer up insight that will give Pistons fans hopes in Plan B and C scenarios. Let’s just get the obvious one out of the way: Detroit needs a star for the future. Of these five point guards, who has the most star potential? NBA scout: It’s LaMelo, for sure, if it all hits right for him.
Game on the line, and you need a bucket. Who is that guy, once they get to the NBA and get acclimated, you think will thrive in that situation? NBA scout: I’d go with LaMelo. He’s ballsy. The thing with him, when he sees defenses are blitzing him, he’s going to find the open guy. He’s 6-foot-7, so he’s going to see over the top of defenses. Killian is a good passer, too, but I don’t think he’s LaMelo. Game on the line, long-term, if he becomes what I think he can be, it’s LaMelo. Again, that’s if the shot comes around like I think it will and he grows even more as a facilitator.
But Williams changed his mind after seeing LaMelo Ball play in a game early on against the Perth Wildcats and guard Damian Martin, a six-time NBL defensive player of the year. “That’s the benchmark for me,” Williams said of Perth. “Any import point guard who thinks they’re good, all we say is this: let’s see what he does against Perth and Damian Martin. They’re physical, they play extremely hard and they’re picking you up full court…. (But) Damian Martin couldn’t do anything with (Ball). They began doubling him, getting the ball out of his hand. Never seen that, ever.” Ball had 19 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists in the preseason game. He hit four 3-pointers. Williams, and the dozens of NBA scouts/front office personnel in attendance, came away impressed. “I said then, that’s the No. 1 pick in the draft. This was (September).”
And according to SNY’s Ian Begley, LaVar isn’t the only person one who wants to see the 6-foot-7 guard in blue and orange next season. Addressed in his most recent Knicks mailbag, Begley is hearing from sources that there are others in LaMelo Ball’s circle — outside of LaVar — who would love to see him end up in New York. It’s unknown who exactly that is, but LaMelo to the Knicks would make a lot of sense. For one, the Knicks need a new point guard, and that seems to be the way they’re looking. A source confirmed to SNY that Ball is the top point guard option on the Knicks’ draft board this summer. “I’d guess most teams do,” an opposing scout said about Ball.
Roc Nation Sports has signed a large class of highly regarded NBA draft prospects, including point guard LaMelo Ball, a projected top-five pick. The agency recently signed Ball’s brother, New Orleans Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball, away from CAA Sports. Roc Nation NBA agent Raymond Brothers is representing both of the Ball brothers. LaMelo Ball, who played last season in Australia on the Illawarra Hawks of the National Basketball League, is ranked No. 3 overall by website nbadraft.net. Brothers is also representing No. 12-ranked Memphis forward Precious Achiuwa.
That should hardly be surprising, knowing new president Leon Rose likes to shoot for the stars. Knicks officials believe the 6-foot-7 playmaker/driver has one of the higher upsides in the entire draft despite his lack of a 3-point shot. Rose has already dealt with outspoken father Lavar Ball when his sons were briefly with Creative Artists Agency.
The Post already has reported league insiders believe father Lavar Ball will attempt to steer him to the big-market Knicks. What does that entail if the Knicks stay at the sixth spot in the draft? They’d probably have to trade up into the top 3 with a club not so hot on either LaMelo or Lavar. Hopefully that team won’t ask for a king’s ransom. If the Knicks remain at No. 6 after the lottery drawing, Ball is not expected to fall to that slot. Keep an eye on the Pistons and Ball in the lottery. Detroit is one of the few teams dying for a point guard, too.
For now, the young star’s sights are set firmly on the short term, namely the 2020 NBA Draft on June 25. While coronavirus has put a big question mark over how the Draft will play out, LaMelo says he’s not picky about where he ends up. “It’s the NBA so I will play for any team. To play with Lonzo would be real cool. We talked about that growing up so it’ll be a dream come true.”
The Illawarra Hawks’ 2019-20 NBL season began with unprecedented hype and ended with a $2.4 million debt as the league commits to saving the foundation franchise. What transpired in between was a LaMelo Ball-driven rollercoaster ride that projected the league into the worldwide spotlight as hoops fans from across the globe tuned in to watch the 18-year-old, blue chip NBA prospect. Wherever the Hawks travelled, the cameras followed, as Ball jerseys filled arenas across the country, with the result often feeling secondary to the spectacle that was ‘the LaMelo show’.
While previous comments made by his outspoken father made it appear LaMelo might not favor being drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers, LaVar Ball insists that’s not necessarily the case. “This is what other people need to understand: They asked me where I would like him to go. I said the Knicks, big city,” LaVar Ball said on the Complex Sports Load Management podcast this week. “My thing is this: whoever the best coach is, that’s going to believe in him and let him do what he does, I don’t care where he’s at.”
“The best fit in my eyes is New York, the New York Knicks,” LaVar said. ”Melo is a big-city guy. He likes the lights, he likes that, he loves it. So everybody’s talking about the city type of thing. Cleveland, he already lived in Cleveland, he [doesn’t] like that cold weather like that, especially if you’re not going to be inside with a lot of bright lights.”
Are Rose’s Knicks interested in Lonzo Ball? What would it take to pry him from the Pelicans? — Matthew Lau. The Knicks would have more interest in LaMelo, who probably will be a top-three pick in the upcoming draft despite playing Down Under. The Knicks seek a scoring point guard in the draft and the 6-foot-7 LaMelo has the most upside despite a shaky delivery on his perimeter jump shot. Lonzo Ball also had struggled with technique but rebuilt his shot and is on the rise.
If the Warriors choose to trade their pick, are there any teams out there who you think will be in the market to move up to a top-five (let’s hope for the No. 1) pick? If so, who do you think that team (or teams) could be looking to trade for that pick? — @WarriorsBraves I spoke recently with NBA draft expert Chad Ford, and he seems to believe there would be one team in the market to trade up should the ping-pong balls not fall their way: the New York Knicks. Specifically, Ford said, for LaMelo Ball. Ball, a genius playmaker with star potential, would provide the Knicks with a much-needed identity on offense.
If the Warriors choose to trade their pick, are there any teams out there who you think will be in the market to move up to a top-five (let’s hope for the No. 1) pick? If so, who do you think that team (or teams) could be looking to trade for that pick? — @WarriorsBraves I spoke recently with NBA draft expert Chad Ford, and he seems to believe there would be one team in the market to trade up should the ping-pong balls not fall their way: the New York Knicks. Specifically, Ford said, for LaMelo Ball. Ball, a genius playmaker with star potential, would provide the Knicks with a much-needed identity on offense.
In an interview, LaVar Ball has claimed that his sons will all end up playing for the Los Angeles Lakers. Lonzo, the oldest, was selected in the 2017 Draft by LA but later traded to New Orleans for Anthony Davis; LaMelo is a projected lottery pick for the upcoming draft; LiAngelo, however, has still to make his debut in the NBA G League after signing for the Oklahoma City Blue.
Jermaine Jackson confirmed that Lonzo, LaMelo and LiAngelo Ball are all preparing to sign with JAY-Z‘s Roc Nation Sports for representation. The sports management division will negotiate marketing opportunities for the brothers, including LaMelo’s sneaker contract which is still in negotiation. Speaking to ESPN, Jackson, who is LaMelo’s manager, referred to the news as a “family decision.” He said, “This is now an extended family. They put together a beautiful game plan with Jay-Z. The basketball game is about to change. They are going to create something totally new.”
Storyline: Agent Changes
LaMelo, Lonzo and LiAngelo Ball are planning to sign with Roc Nation Sports, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony. “This was a family decision,” Jermaine Jackson, LaMelo Ball’s agent, told ESPN. “This is now an extended family. They put together a beautiful game plan with Jay-Z. The basketball game is about to change. They are going to create something totally new.” Roc Nation Sports is a branch of Jay-Z’s music management company, which he started in 2013. The company represents multiple sports and top NBA players like Kyrie Irving and Markelle Fultz.
The Wizards did their due diligence on Ball this season, sending multiple people to Australia to scout him in-person as well as hiring a scout based full-time in the area, NBC Sports Washington was told. With Ball and also R.J. Hampton in that region, the NBA scouting map has expanded and the Wizards had good timing with their front office overhaul last summer. They beefed up their international scouting capabilities and were prepared for covering more ground across the globe.
Ex-NBAer Aaron Brooks is admitting he was COMPLETELY wrong about his teammate LaMelo Ball … saying his time with the phenom was nothing but positive. TMZ Sports spoke with Brooks about playing with the youngest Ball bro on the Australian NBL’s Illawarra Hawks … and the ex-Houston Rockets star says he was against the idea at first. “For me, when I found out that he was gonna be there, I was like, ‘look, I don’t wanna go through that,'” Brooks says. “I come from the old school of being with Dikembe Mutombo, Rafer Alston, Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming … and now I’m playing with an 18-year-old Kardashian kid.”