According to ESPN’s Jalen Rose, the timing of Ball’s injury report and his social media beef with Kuzma are clear signals that Ball has been working to diminish his trade value. Rose floated the theory Wednesday, and explained that Ball is doing anything he can to ensure he remains a Laker. Jalen Rose: “This is obvious. Think about it – the kid grew up in California. All he ever wanted to do is be a Los Angeles Laker. His father wished it into existence. …. His father said he was going to be the greatest point guard of all time, and guess what Magic Johnson said? ‘I want your number hanging in the rafters. He doesn’t want to leave there. You think it was an accident when he dropped the diss record on his own teammate during the heightened time of free agency when they’re trying to woo LeBron James?”
Mike Greenberg: "What you're saying is that Lonzo Ball has spent the last month or thereabouts purposely diminishing his own trade value?" Jalen Rose: "That's smart. He doesn't want to leave L.A. If you don't want to leave L.A., do all of the things that don't make people think you're an attractive commodity to bring to their team. Do the San Antonio Spurs want Lonzo Ball?
Adrian Wojnarowski: "That [Lonzo Ball] knee injury, I think there was a belief around the Lakers is that it was within his world that that got leaked out there to keep him from getting traded. He doesn’t want to be traded from L.A. It wasn’t the Lakers who wanted information out on that knee injury. There were a lot of teams who were checking on possible deals with the Lakers. They wanted to know. There were a lot of questions about that knee."
The question now is whether the Lakers even have enough to convince the San Antonio Spurs to send Leonard there. With San Antonio believed to be uninterested in Lonzo Ball, the Lakers have three other intriguing young players — Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma and Josh Hart — plus their future first-round picks to include in a deal.
"If they wanna trade him, trade him. It'll be the worst move they ever made." LaVar went off at his JBA season opener on Thursday afternoon -- when we asked about the rumblings that Magic Johnson could ship Lonzo to San Antonio to get Kawhi Leonard. "If they wanna trade him, trade him. If they don't wanna trade him, keep him. He's gonna do his thing. I'm not worried about no trades.
Harrison Faigen: This is where aggregation gets out of control and why journalists get sick of it. Everyone is writing up that tweet saying that Lonzo would need to be gone if LeBron James came, but the problem is, Haynes never said that. Here is the transcript of the question and his answer
As the Lakers head into a potentially franchise-changing offseason, their front office is keeping its options fully open. While they like their young core and would prefer to keep those players growing together, they have told teams no player is untouchable in trades, according to multiple sources who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of trade and free-agent negotiations.
To be clear, the Lakers are not actively shopping any of their players. They are willing to listen to offers and could move one of them — even a member of the talented young cadre of Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram or Josh Hart — if an offer blows them away.
On Monday, LaVar, LiAngelo and LaMelo appeared in studio with ESPN LA’s Marcellus Wiley and Travis Rodgers. Late in the interview, the potential of Lonzo getting traded for Leonard and was brought up. LaVar was having none of it. He said: “Stop it. Stop it. I’m gonna tell you why (that won’t happen). You know what Lonzo is to me? Gelo is my pretty boy. This (LaMelo) is my wow boy. But Zo is the people’s choice. They won’t let it happen. You can’t get rid of Zo! He’s the people’s choice. “Everybody on the outside can say what they want, but when you put it down on paper, the Ball boys are good for business.”
Pulling LaVar Ball aside and privately threatening to trade his son if he keeps squawking is unlikely to have much impact when everyone knows the list of teams willing to trade for Lonzo Ball and inherit the circus surrounding him is nonexistent. While Kyle Kuzma has looked like a draft steal to rival Donovan Mitchell, and Brandon Ingram quietly continues to make real strides, it’s hard to notice anything else in Lakerland when the daily Ball soap opera is so suffocating. (To his credit, though, Lonzo Ball has been a steadying force through the latest controversy and a subsequent four-game winning streak.)
June 13, 2021 | 2:45 am EDT Update
Spencer Dinwiddie still hasn’t rejoined the Nets. After partially tearing his right ACL in December, he has been rehabbing in Los Angeles and was expected to at least meet up with his teammates at some point. Recent reports have suggested Dinwiddie could play if the Nets reach the NBA Finals — set to begin July 8 — but sources have maintained it’s unlikely.
JD Shaw: 14-year NBA veteran Amir Johnson has signed in the TBT with The Money Team, a group ran by Floyd Mayweather. Johnson has seen action in 870 NBA games and last played in 2018-19 with Philadelphia.
Utah Jazz star guard Donovan Mitchell exited Saturday’s 132-106 Game 3 loss to the LA Clippers because of pain in his right ankle, but the decision for him not to return was due to the lopsided score. “I feel like I was able to go back, but no need to risk it down 16, 18 at that point,” Mitchell said. “I’ll be fine.”
Mitchell has averaged 32.3 points per game during the playoffs, including 30 point on 11-of-24 shooting in Game 3, despite dealing with persistent pain in the ankle. “It’s when I land,” Mitchell said. “It’s been just trying to manage it. I don’t really know what else to tell you; I don’t want to say too much. It was just the landing, but I’m good. I’ll be ready for Game 4.”
Jared Weiss: Donovan Mitchell: “I’m good. That’s all I got for you. I’m good. The situation happened. I felt like I was good to come back, but no need to risk it down 18. Time to rest up and get ready for the next game.”
With the game slipping away from the Jazz, Mitchell had a conversation with coach Quin Snyder. He did not return to the game, although the Utah medical staff had cleared him to return. “He’s in good shape,” Snyder said. “He could have gone back in the game, but at that point, the lead had stretched. In fact, while we were talking, I think Kawhi hit a 3. That was my decision not to put him back in at that point. The game had gotten away from us at that point, but he’s fine.”
When asked what his relationship is with Ingles, George said, “I don’t care about him. Next question.” For the Clippers, there is no question how good they can be when George and Leonard shift their games to another level like they did on Saturday. Not only did they combine to make 26 of 48 shots but they also took the challenge of slowing down Donovan Mitchell. While Mitchell finished with 30 points before tweaking his sore right ankle, he was held scoreless for the first 16 minutes and 26 seconds of the game. After contesting 71% of his field goal attempts in the first two Jazz wins, the Clippers contested all but one of Mitchell’s 24 shots in Game 3, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.