Lakers take offense to smack talk from Wizards about Lonzo Ball
The Los Angeles Lakers have taken offense to some smack talk about Lonzo Ball out of the Washington Wizards ahead of Wednesday’s showdown between the teams at Staples Center.
Wizards center Marcin Gortat got the ball rolling on Twitter Monday reacting to a tweet about some boisterous bravado — shocking — out of the Lakers rookie’s father, LaVar Ball.
Gortat tweeted Wizards point guard John wall intends to “torture” Ball throughout the game.
man….. pleaseeeeee!!! @JohnWall will torture him for 48min
— Marcin Gortat (@MGortat) October 23, 2017
Somewhat echoing Gortat’s sentiments, Wall made his eagerness to face Ball quite clear while also taking a shot at the outspoken elder Ball in the process, which has become quite common in the NBA early on this season — saying in part, “Nah, no mercy.”
“[Gortat] said what he said about me. I didn’t say anything,” Wall said, via ESPN. “His dad has been talking … that makes me want to go out there and lead my team and play the best I can play.”
Count Lakers forward Brandon Ingram among those who didn’t appreciate the chatter.
“Yeah, of course we did,” Ingram said when asked about Gortat’s tweet. “Everyone has social media, definitely saw it. The competitor in Lonzo, of course he didn’t take it so well and, with his teammates behind him, we didn’t take it so well.”
Lonzo Ball downplayed how his father’s propensity to pump him. up is something he’s grown accustomed to, saying, “That’s how I grew up, so that’s normal for me.”
Regarding how the Wizards threw down the gauntlet ahead of Wednesday’s game, Lonzo Ball downplayed it.
“I don’t pay no mind to it,” Ball said of Gortat’s tweet before adding, “I already know my teammates have my back. So we’re going to go out there, we’re going to play and hopefully get a win.”
As noted by NBA analysts, players and many others, LaVar Ball has put a target on his son’s back with his antics. The younger Ball better just accept that and roll with it, which seems to be what he’s doing at this point.