The Los Angeles Lakers won’t have much to do during the 2018 NBA Draft Lottery on Tuesday night, as their pick towards the top of the draft will either got to the Philadelphia 76ers or the Boston Celtics. The Lakers will pop up one more time in the first round (via the Cleveland Cavaliers) and once in the second round, so despite missing the postseason, their Tuesday night will be rather inconsequential.
Still, while Los Angeles seems like its focus is on free agency this summer, it’s still in line to add a few players once the draft rolls around. If LaVar Ball has his way, that means his middle son, LiAngelo, will end up alongside his older brother, Lonzo, in Los Angeles.
There are questions about whether LiAngelo has a future in the league, especially because it’s not clear if his shooting stroke is NBA caliber. But despite this, Ball has one big supporter in Kobe Bryant … kind of. TMZ caught up with the Oscar-winning shooting guard about whether he’d be cool with Los Angeles taking Ball, and he give an endorsement of sorts.
“Win,” Bryant said when asked what he wants the Lakers to do in the draft. “Pick some players that’ll help them win.” He then was asked if he’d be cool with the Lakers taking a member of the Ball family — LiAngelo is the only one in this draft — and Bryant said he’d be cool with it “if it’ll help win.”
If the Lakers take Ball in the draft, it would almost assuredly be in the second round. If they don’t, and he goes undrafted (which seems likely based on scouting reports of Ball’s game) they’ll likely get the chance to sign him as a pickup for the Summer League roster and see what he can do there, if they so choose.