Lonzo Ball has gotten the most fanfare and publicity of any of the NBA’s talented incoming rookies.
As such, he’s under the microscope 24/7. It’s no surprise he was accused of intentionally ducking a rematch with former Kentucky guard turned Sacramento Kings rookie De’Aaron Fox.
Fox shut Ball down in a Sweet 16 matchup between Kentucky and UCLA. Ball was held to just 10 points by Fox, who scored 39 points of his own.
Allegedly, Lonzo was sitting out with a groin injury. He told the Washington Post after the game that he wanted to play, but the decision wasn’t his to make. Considering the investment the Lakers have made in Lonzo Ball, that’s entirely possible.
De’Aaron Fox didn’t seem to think so, though.
De'Aaron Fox's since-deleted tweet, presumably in reference to no rematch with Ball. pic.twitter.com/tnHVfOxAAw
— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) July 10, 2017
Neither did one NBA Scout, who chose to remain anonymous. He didn’t dance around the issue when asked what he thought o Lonzo sitting out the game against De’Aaron Fox and the Kings.
Scout on Lonzo Ball sitting vs. De'Aaron Fox: "That's ridiculous. I'd be pissed if he was on our team."
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) July 11, 2017
Is Lonzo Ball ducking De’Aaron Fox? It seems silly to think so. But Lonzo’s basketball ability is the third or fourth thing his brand is based on. His image as a Big Baller comes first, and he might be trying to protect that.
Can’t afford to hurt the sale of the BBB ZO2’s.
Then again, maybe he just hurt his groin.