LaVar Ball slams Lakers coach Luke Walton again: 'They don't want to play for him'

LaVar Ball may be in Lithuania helping his younger sons LiAngelo and LaMelo get adjusted to their new lives as professionals, but he's still more than willing to share his thoughts on Los Angeles Lakers coach Luke Walton. 

LaVar has often been critical of Walton, who of course coaches his oldest son, Lonzo Ball. And this latest interview was no different. Speaking to Jeff Goodman, LaVar said that Walton has lost control of the team, and that the Lakers "don't want to play for him." Via ESPN:

"You can see they're not playing for Luke no more," Ball said from a spa resort in Birstonas, where he is staying while his two youngest sons, LiAngelo and LaMelo, get ready to make their professional debuts with Lithuanian team Prienu Vytautas. "Luke doesn't have control of the team no more. They don't want to play for him."

"That's a good team," he added of the Lakers, who have lost nine straight games. "Nobody wants to play for him. I can see it. No high-fives when they come out of the game. People don't know why they're in the game. He's too young. He's too young. ... He ain't connecting with them anymore. You can look at every player, he's not connecting with not one player."

After a surprisingly decent start, the Lakers have lost their last nine games, and are currently in last place in the Western Conference at 11-27. Only the Atlanta Hawks have a worse record in the entire league. And to be sure, they have had problems with effort, which often is at least somewhat related to the coaching. 

However, the fact that the Lakers' front office has been so openly angling for big free agents this summer -- which would mean gutting the roster -- is likely playing a role in the Lakers' efforts. It's not easy to play hard each and every night for a bad team that you know doesn't want you around after this season. 

Speaking of big free agents, LaVar is also convinced that LeBron James will be making his way to Los Angeles this summer. 

"LeBron's coming to L.A. I know he's coming to L.A.," Ball said. "LeBron is not a fool. What's the only way he can beat Jordan? You can't get more championships. Only one way, to say every team I've gone to I've won a championship. Go to Lakers and win a championship, then you're better than Jordan.

LaVar also added the following, which might be the funniest thing he's ever said: 

"You can't give my son the best player in the league, and don't expect them not to win. Get rid of everybody. Give him LeBron and Gelo [LiAngelo Ball]. You got a 2 and a 3. And it's a win. It's a wrap. Then all you need are two rebounders -- [Julius] Randle and [Larry] Nance Jr."

Hell yeah. 

NBA Writer

Jack Maloney lives and writes in Milwaukee, where, like the Bucks, he is trying to own the future. Full Bio

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