When UCLA freshman point guard Lonzo Ball was drafted second overall by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2017 NBA Draft, the reaction from fans was very mixed. Obviously they were happy to have a great player like Lonzo become part of their team, but they also had another feeling.

Ask almost any Lakers fan what they thought as soon as they knew Ball was coming to the city of angels to play for the purple and gold, and they all say the same thing. Something along the lines of: ‘I love the kid, but his company could hurt us.’ It is hard to disagree with. If you do not know of LaVar Ball, Lonzo’s father, then you have probably been living under a rock for the past eight months. Long story short, LaVar has made many brash comments, making himself open to ridicule.

He has been used as one of the many reasons why Lonzo will not succeed in the NBA. Many people think he will be a bust, and choosing him was the wrong selection. So far, he has proven them wrong.

In his first five games in the NBA Summer League, he has averaged 16 points, is pulling down eight rebounds a game, and adding nine assists. He has already had two triple-doubles, a stat-line that leaves many an NBA fan drooling. He has been by far the best player in the Summer League, besting young talent like Dennis Smith Jr. and De’Aaron Fox in the skill category. While his shooting numbers are struggling and could be much better (He is shooting 20-percent from three, 75-percent from the charity stripe, and 35-percent from the field) his skill as a playmaker has shone through. On the surface, he appears to be a very confident player, and very good leader.

As T.J. Leaf, Lonzo’s former teammate at UCLA and a first round pick himself put it, “He’s just a natural born leader.” It’s hard not to see that on the court. The quality of a leader is shown by if he makes his teammates better, and Lonzo does just that. And though he is a calm and collected focal point, he is also fierce. He drives to the basket with no fear, getting fouled almost every play because of the physicality he is willing to play with. On top of all that, he is good for a highlight play almost every game.

All of that being said, many, including myself, can’t see a future for Lonzo Ball that isn’t as bright as the sun.

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Love the NBA. Follow me on twitter @tscoerr

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