UCLA Standout and Projected Top Draft Pick Lonzo Ball Declines To Work Out For NBA’s Most Historic Franchise In The Boston Celtics According To Danny Ainge
In a radio interview with Toucher and Rich on 98.5 in Boston Thursday, Celtics general manager Danny Ainge said point guard Lonzo Ball informed the team he won’t workout for them prior to the Draft. With that in mind, it appears increasingly likely the Celtics will select guard Markelle Fultz out of Washington with the top selection.
“We tried to get him in for a workout and he politely said no,” Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations, said on 98.5 the Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich show.
Lonzo’s father is LaVar Ball, who said this on Dale and Holley of WEEI in March“I want him to be a Laker. But that’s just my opinion,“It’s not about me liking [the Celtics] or disliking them. It’s just that we’re west coast guys,” he said. “I’d love for him to stay on the west coast where his brothers can see him all of the time. We’re a real big family. That’s just the only difference.”
LaVar played for the Los Angeles Lakers in his playing days and the entire family lives in LA as well as the college Lonzo went to in UCLA. With the Lakers holding the second pick in the draft paired with Ball declining to workout further points to Boston passing on him in favor of University of Washington standout Markelle Fultz.
Ainge didn’t dismiss the idea of drafting Ball despite his inability to see Boston as an option.
“It’s not ideal,” Ainge said of Ball’s decision to decline working out for Boston. “Listen, we’ve drafted guys that wouldn’t come in for workouts before. It’s not the end of the world. We’ve watched them play a ton. We have a lot of information on them. Sometimes players don’t want to come in, not because they don’t like you, they see our roster. They think they would prefer to go to another team.”
If Boston decided to draft Lonzo despite his clear desire to not play in Boston would be humorous. But if Ainge is smart Fultz will be the guy for the Boston Celtics, or if he is in win now mode they will trade the pick for a star.