LeBron James believes Lonzo Ball can be great, and he wants to help him reach his full potential.
As Lonzo Ball makes his way through his second season in the NBA, it’s not a secret that he has experienced his fair share of ups and downs in the league.
The Los Angeles Lakers chose him with the second overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft because they wanted him to be the next great Lakers player — and there have been many of those. Ball’s rookie year was just alright, with most of his headlines stemming from injuries and overblown comments from his outspoken father, LaVar Ball.
But now, in his sophomore campaign in the NBA, Ball is teaming with the best player in the world, LeBron James. The 15-year veteran and three-time NBA champion knows exactly how good Ball can be, and he wants to help lift him to his full potential.
“Sometimes he doesn’t realize how great he is,” James said, according to ESPN’s Dave McMenamin, following the Lakers’ 90-83 home win over the Utah Jazz. “The things that he possesses out on the floor when Zo realizes how good he is on the floor, it makes him a very dynamic player and it makes us even better. And he’s been doing that as of late, [with] his aggressive.”
Ball obviously has potential to be great, hence why he was taken No. 2 overall. But confidence can be an issue when a historically great organization like the Lakers heaps that kind of pressure on your shoulders.
That’s why LeBron wants to help give him that needed motivation, and for Ball, it couldn’t come from anybody better. If the greatest player in the world believes he can be great, then confidence shouldn’t be a problem for the 21-year-old.
As James said, he encouraged Ball to be more aggressive after he struggled in a back-to-back in Orlando and Miami last week, when Ball went just 1-for-11 in the two games.
After James gave Ball the message, he came back with a season-high fifteen points on a 7-for-11 shooting night in Cleveland. He kept it going against the Jazz at Staples Center as well, coming just one point shy of a double-double with nine points and 10 rebounds.
It’s amazing what a few words of motivation from one of the NBA’s all-time greats, who just happens to be a teammate, can do for a young player. Aggressiveness might just be the key for Ball to become the NBA’s next great point guard.