Published: Mon, January 08, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

LaVar Ball Says the Lakers "Don't want to play" for Luke Walton

"I coach as if it's not".

His father's comments aside, Ball is third on the team with 33.7 minutes a night.

"You can see they're not playing for Luke no more", Ball told Goodman at a spa resort in Birstonas, Lithuania. "Luke doesn't have control of the team no more. They don't want to play for him", LaVar Ball said.

One wonders if Carlisle is more upset with Ball, or ESPN. Give him LeBron and [LiAngelo]. Still, anyone who's paid even semi attention to Ball over the previous year isn't surprised.

On Sunday, Walton was forced to respond to Ball's latest jab - the belief that the Lakers head coach has lost his players. "As long as Zo's fine with it and Zo can come out and play, and it doesn't affect mine and his relationship then it doesn't bother me at all".

LaVar added that he expects LeBron James to come to the Lakers because coming to the Lakers and winning a championship with a third team would be the only way James could surpass Michael Jordan as the greatest player ever. "We're going to play for him".

"I just think it's in my head right now".

"My job is to play basketball", Ball said when asked about having a preference for playing for certain coaches.

Walton said that he pulled Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (zero points in 20 minutes) early on because of an uncharacteristically poor attention to defense. "They're 100% behind and supporting what we're doing". My only concern with any of it is for [Lonzo Ball]. The press is going to make it out like I'm trying to demean them or they're trying to demean me.

Walton contended that he had not seen any frustrations with Ball in response to his coaching style and said he hoped comments coming from the player's father did not have an impact on the fan narrative or the organization's decision making. "I've said all along there's always parents, and parents are going to get mad at things, that's what they do".

Clearly, LaVar is a father who wants to have input on how his sons are coached, who they play with, and what they do on the court. "We talk all the time".

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