June 22, 2017
The Lakers drafted UCLA and former Chino Hills High School point guard Lonzo Ball on Thursday night with the 2nd pick in the NBA draft.
Since the Lakers are run by the greatest point guard of all-time, Ball gave respect to the Laker legend after being selected.
“He’s one of the best to ever do it, and I can’t — there’s never going to be another Magic Johnson,” Ball said. “So I’m trying to be myself, but if I can come halfway short of him, you know it’s going to be good.”
Ball, 19, was one of three UCLA players drafted on Thursday night. The others were TJ Leaf, who was selected 18th overall by Indiana. Ike Anigbogu also went to the Pacers with the 47th pick.
Ball is known for his unselfishness and playmaking ability. Those intangibles are what coach Luke Walton really liked.
“When he’s on the floor, all four guys out there with him become better instantly,” Lakers coach Luke Walton said. “That’s a quality trait that not many people have. The great ones all have it. I hope by the way he plays, everyone else on our team becomes better.’’
The Lakers also selected I selected Utah forward Kyle Kuzma with the 27th pick, which they received earlier in the week from Brooklyn.
LA then traded the 28th pick, which they originally received from Houston, to Utah. In exchange, the Lakers received the 30th and 42nd pick. They took Villanova guard Josh Hart with the 30th pick and Indiana center Thomas Bryant with the 42nd pick.
And so the Ball era begins in LA…….