When you grow up with LaVar Ball as your father, you grow up in a world of noise and distractions. Lonzo Ball is very good at tuning out the noise his father makes — when he first entered the league, LaVar made a lot of noise, but little of it entered the Lakers’ locker room. Nobody is as good as tuning out their parents as a teen/early 20s child.
For Lonzo, it’s the same with the trade rumors swirling around him now. Ball is in the final year of his rookie contract and will be a restricted free agent this summer, and that, combined with the struggles early of the Pelicans, has led to his name coming up in trade rumors.
After the Pelicans’ win Friday, Ball said he tunes that talk out. Via Andrew Lopez of ESPN:
“I just stay the course,” Ball said when asked if he had any extra motivation this week. “I’ve been playing basketball for a long time. I put a lot of work in and just try to play my game. That’s how I play. I just try to stay away from all the noise and just go out there and try to help my team win games.”
Ball lived up to those words on Friday night, tying his career-best by draining seven three-pointers in the win over the Bucks. He’s had a couple of strong games since the rumors went public.
Lonzo has been in trade rumors — and been traded — before. He gets the business of the NBA. Solid veteran players around the league know how to tune that noise out and focus on the game, and Ball has had to do that a lot longer than he has been in the NBA.