Lonzo seen as new face of Lakers

Ross Houston
June 24, 2017

"I think when this really came into focus for us was, we knew the talent was transcendent". D'Angelo had a chance to redeem himself in his second season, and he played better in the second half of the year, but his Lakers finished with the third-worst record in the National Basketball Association. Johnson said that he wants a player who makes everyone around him better and it sounds like Russell is not that type of a player. The way he passes the ball, you look at quarterbacks like Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers, that just have a gift.

Ball, sporting a No. 2 Dodgers jersey, made an appearance at Dodger Stadium later Friday to throw out the first pitch before the team's game against the Colorado Rockies.

"There's clearly a gift, with what he's been blessed with".

Since Los Angeles landed the second overall pick back in mid-May, there had been the steady expectation that the team would take the former UCLA product.

Both Pelinka and Johnson told the tale of the day they went to Chino Hills and witnessed how the Ball family lives and the manner in which the patriarch of the family, Lavar Ball, interacts with his sons, his wife and the neighborhood kids.

"Watch out", Johnson said. Just in the last few years, Rudy Gobert and Larry Nance were selected 27th overall. "Big Zu (Ivica Zubac) back there trailing - wham!"

It was pointed out that the Lakers are putting as much pressure on Ball as they have perhaps placed on any rookie. Along with that, Ball also mentioned that he is ready to put in the work and prove that all the hype around him is real.

"In press conferences, I don't like a lot of hyperbole and a whole bunch of words", Pelinka said Friday. "I'm used to it".

National Basketball Association players took to twitter an provided commentary throughout the night-making the draft experience that much more special for fans.

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Los Angeles still plans to pursue George in 2018 free agency, and George has remained adamant that he will only sign with the Lakers. Lastly, he was a reporter for the award-winning newspaper, The Daily Sundial, at California State University, Northridge.

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