Lonzo Ball was born in Southern California, went to college in southern California, and very may well play his professional basketball in southern California. In fact, the other week, Ball said he'd rather play for the Lakers than be the No. 1 pick. Seriously. When he was asked that very same question on SportsNation, this was his response.
I'm going with the Lakers ... All my family is from L.A. so to be able to play in front of them, I think that would mean more to me.
Wednesday, in an interview with The Vertical, Ball softened that stance a bit saying he'll "play for anyone," and "just making it to the NBA, that's my goal."
Still, he did daydream about the possibility of staying in SoCal to play for the Lakers, specifically in regards to Magic Johnson's new involvement with the franchise. Via The Vertical:
"The Lakers are in L.A., and they're close to home," Ball told The Vertical. "This is where all my family is. Hopefully, they have a nice pick and they have a chance to get me. I want this to be realistic. Just being very family-oriented, to play in front of them would mean a lot to me. The Lakers are a young team and they have a lot of young talent."
"I can learn a lot from Magic, and it would be a blessing for me to be able to take after him each and every day," Ball told The Vertical. "Magic is probably the best guard to ever play the game. The fact that he also played as a big guard, he can show me things.
"I would love to have that sit-down and learn to be the best player I can be."
That sounds like pretty good reasoning to me.
As Ball noted, Magic is one of the best to ever play the game, and they do have some similarities, being big guards who like to pass. And in terms of someone to learn from as a young point guard, Magic Johnson would be right at the top of the list.