Lonzo Ball was obviously inspired by his long layoff due to injury because he has returned as a much better player, no doubt. His 18 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds, capped off by two clutch game-locking three’s in a 116-112 win against the Spurs has the Big Baller bandwagon back in effect and its leaving the station for another run.
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The Zo faithfuls are back at it again. Chastising anyone who ever referred to him as a bust and back to predicting that he will become a superstar player in the league.
To his credit, Zos showed more swag and a better jumpshot than he has this entire season. He is 8 of 12 on threes in his last three games and his shooting prowess has certainly perked the bravado of his supporters. The hype is again at an all-time high.
Lonzo Ball is already a great player. He’s impacting the game in so many subtle ways that it is extraordinary what he’s already doing at age 20.” @RealSkipBayless on Lonzo’s 18 PTS (6-10 from 3), 11 AST, 7 REB in win at San Antonio https://t.co/tDWtj3pzEX
Its hard to remember another rookie who has played under the scrutiny, criticism and family interference that Lonzos had to deal with. But its what comes with being highly-touted and thrust into the limelight by a dad whose mere presence creates marketable fodder and a media firestorm.
The back and forth banter about Zo is really unfair to the young brother. But his supporters, more than anyone, feel it’s necessary to keep talking about anything he does well on the court because of the situation his father and an unprecedented media infatuation placed him in.
His entire rookie career has turned into a battle between the folks who put him on a pedestal prematurely as a player and his Dad who once said hed be better than Steph Curry in his rookie season and the sensible fans, media who have been long turned off by the hyperbole surrounding Lonzo, Lavar and his Big Baller brothers.
Those who have staked their basketball credibility on Lonzo becoming something special continue to push harder when he plays better. It legitimizes the pom poms theyve been waving.
For months on Undisputed, I’ve been telling Shannon Sharpe and all the doubters that LONZO BALL CAN SHOOT 3s. He just made three huge late 3s at San Antonio – 6-10 3s for the game. 18/11/7. 2 blocks. SPECIAL PLAYER.
Those who dont believe that he will ever earn the superlatives that revered basketball minds such as Magic Johnson have bestowed upon him, dont even blink when he has a decent game and the basketball world goes crazy. Hes a solid rookie, but hasnt warranted the props some of his supporters bestow upon him.
With Lonzo, we are seeing where reality TV and reality meet, and the lines that are increasing blurred between the two. Some people have a hard time deciphering the difference.
While a 10, 7 and 7 stat line is impressive for a rookie, the best thing for this kid is still for everyone to just let him play and learn. Stop making him a part of your personal resume in regards to your basketball acumen.
Hes going to be who hes going to be and theres nothing that twisting a narrative can do about it. Let the boy breathe and ball.