nsucurrent.com April 21, 2018

LaVar Ball says Lakers 'don't want to play' for Luke Walton

08 January 2018, 03:11 | Nina Perez

One wonders if Carlisle is more upset with Ball, or ESPN.

Less than a month ago, the Los Angeles Lakers approached LaVar Ball and kindly asked him to tone down his criticism of Luke Walton, because it was becoming a major distraction that the young team didn't need. "Luke doesn't have control of the team no more".

Walton said the comments didn't concern him, as long as they didn't adversely affect his player. "Nobody wants to play for him".

"I don't see that our players aren't playing hard", Walton responded to Ball's father's comments.

Lonzo only shot 8 times throughout the game, but knocked down 4 shots, including three 3-pointers as he poured in 11 points, five assists, four rebounds and two steals in the loss. He ain't connecting with them anymore. "You can look at every player, he's not connecting with not one player", he continued.

"As president of the NBA Coaches Association, I view the ESPN article as a disgrace", Carlisle said.

Asked if he disagrees with the idea that he's lost the locker room, Walton responded, "I would disagree with that, yes". We're going through that now. "We're going through that now and we went through it past year". "But part of that partnership is that the coaches do a lot of things to help them with access, interviews. Printing an article where the father of an National Basketball Association player has an opinion that is printed as anything like legitimate erodes trust that we built with ESPN". While the Lakers point guard doesn't believe Walton has lost the locker room, he didn't exactly put his foot down in an attempt to defend his coach. Two years ago, he took a veteran team and led them to 24 wins in a row, which is an unbelievable accomplishment. Off of that he earned the Laker job.

The fact that the Lakers have been inactive to make trades that most of us think they should, and they've reportedly been exploring said trade options since last season, means that they haven't made up their mind in the front office. They've gone from looking like a scrappy team to a night off at this point in the season and they won't be keeping their draft pick this summer. So yeah, they probably shouldn't be making any comments from the outside.

In a statement Knicks' GM Scott Perry said, "Jarrett has been a leader for the Knicks on and off the court". However, he also said Walton isn't the right coach for the team even if the Lakers do eventually sign James.

Jack took it in stride, noting, "It's pretty cool". "I know how to coach him".

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