Anthony Davis trade rumors are heating up as we approach the trade deadline on Thursday afternoon, and a too-familiar face has joined the conversation. LaVar Ball is trying to call the shots for his son Lonzo’s future should the Lakers complete a trade for Davis.
“We want to be in L.A.,” LaVar said, according to ESPN’s Ohm Youngmisuk. “But if he’s traded, I don’t want Lonzo in New Orleans. Phoenix is the best fit for him. And I am going to speak it into existence.”
Ball would almost definitely be a trade piece in any form of Lakers deal for AD. His name was included in the most recent offer the team made, per the L.A. Times’ Brad Turner. That deal has Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram, Rajon Rondo, Lance Stephenson, Michael Beasley and two first-round picks going to New Orleans for Davis and Solomon Hill.
Does LaVar’s statement matter?
LaVar can’t force Phoenix to get involved, but the Suns should have a desire to land Lonzo, a 21-year-old point guard with All-Star upside. The Suns have deployed Devin Booker in that role to mixed results.
That’s why LaVar wants him there. He’d be likely to assume a starting job on Day 1, which isn’t as clear in NOLA, where Jrue Holiday has the reins.
It’s unclear what it would take to get Ball to Phoenix, or if New Orleans would even agree to a deal that included an unhappy Ball family. There’s a chance the Lakers could persuade the Suns into a three-team trade to bolster its offer for Davis, but also, who knows the weight of LaVar’s influence in the NBA.
Ball is under contract until 2021, when he’ll become a restricted free agent for whatever team he’s on. He’ll be obligated to play or risk contract-sucking fines.
Remember though, LaVar did speak Lonzo to the Lakers into existence. Maybe he can go to 2-for-2.