Trump? Fine. Women? Attack away. UCLA, Chino Hills High? Go for it.
But the Lakers are trying to clamp LaVar Ball’s mouth when Luke Walton is involved.
The Los Angeles front office and Papa Baller recently had a meeting, ESPN reported Wednesday, in which the team told him to tone down his criticisms of the Lakers coach.
The (in)famous patriarch of the Ball family, which stars Lakers point guard Lonzo, recently went after the team coaching staff, and Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka drew the line.
“It was the best thing, man,” LaVar told ESPN about the meeting with the Lakers, who declined comment. “Everybody’s going to try to make it an ego thing, like I’m trying to tell them what to do or they’re trying to tell me to tone it down. It’s not about that. It’s about coming together and to get a solution to this problem.
“It may sound crazy to other people, but I really just want the best for Lonzo, and the best for Lonzo is going to be what’s best for the organization. Because if everybody’s winning, we good.”
But they’ve been losing — most recently on Tuesday to the Knicks, falling to 10-16 — and the two sides are not good. LaVar has kept up his all-press-is-good-press credo, constantly making headlines for his outlandish and/or unfiltered thoughts, recently putting Walton in his crosshairs.
“They’re soft. They don’t know how to coach my son,” LaVar Ball told Bleacher Report last month of the Lakers staff, without mentioning Walton directly. “I know how to coach him. I tell him to go get the victory. Stop messing around.”
In the aftermath, the Lakers installed a “LaVar Ball rule,” which stipulates that media can no longer hound the family section of Staples Center games, making for fewer opportunities for LaVar to sound off. But not zero opportunities.
“I’m going to say whatever I want to say, however I want to say it,” said Ball, who suggested he won’t shut up but understood the Lakers’ message. “And they said, ‘LaVar, come and talk to us first.’ So that’s fine, too.
“But I am going to say, to plant a seed, ‘Let’s look for this now.’ They may not want to hear that, but it’s going to be successful if you listen to what I’m saying on that fact, that I know what it takes for my son to run like this.”