Luke Walton has two starting-caliber point guards on his roster and he’s going with the much more experienced veteran.
The Los Angeles Lakers drafted point guard Lonzo Ball second overall in the 2017 NBA Draft because they saw that he had superstar potential; they wanted him to be the guy to return the Lakers to “Showtime” status.
Ball might still get a chance to do that in the future, but that time is not now.
After Ball turned in a somewhat disappointing rookie season, due in large part to injuries, paired with the fact that LeBron James has now brought his talents to the West Coast, it’s evident that Ball isn’t the right guy to start at point guard for the Lakers. At least, now right now.
That’s why head coach Luke Walton has named veteran point guard Rajon Rondo as the team’s starting point guard for the time being.
It could just be a temporary thing, as Ball is still recovering from offseason surgery. But considering the Lakers are essentially a completely remodeled team, and this offense now revolves entirely around James, a veteran point guard like Rondo is just a better fit.
The 32-year-old Rondo has been in the league for over a decade and has NBA Finals experience, having played in the Finals twice with the Boston Celtics in 2008 and 2010 and winning it the first time.
While a member of those Celtics teams, he played with veteran superstars like Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen.
It’s safe to say Rondo knows how to handle being on a team like this. When at his best, he’s one of the league’s top tier point guards; a playmaker who can dish out assists right and left.
That’s what James needs with this Lakers team, and Rondo gives him that much more than the inexperienced Ball does.
Lonzo’s outspoken father LaVar Ball might not like the decision, but frankly, it doesn’t seem like Walton, or Lakers president Magic Johnson, really gives a hoot.