According to The Los Angeles Times’ Tania Ganguli, if Lonzo Ball were to be involved in the Anthony Davis trade, Ball’s camp prefers a situation without an established point guard, namely the Phoenix Suns. Ganguli says there’s mutual interest between Ball and the Suns.
After learning of the Lakers’ offers to the Pelicans, Lonzo Ball’s camp maintains that New Orleans isn’t the desired destination. Phoenix makes the most basketball sense if Ball were to be traded and according to two sources there is mutual interest.— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) January 31, 2019
The only way I can envision this happening before the trade deadline is if Davis does end up a member of the Lakers while Phoenix helps facilitate in exchange for Ball. However, the immediate and long-term impact of Ball would be large, as he would fill two big backcourt needs: playmaking and on-ball defense.
So far this season, Ball is averaging 9.9 points, 5.3 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.5 steals in 30.3 minutes. The one area Ball lacks in shooting, where he’s only a career 31.5 percent shooter from deep and 43.7 percent from the free throw line, would be helped by the presence of Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton to take defensive attention away from Ball and turn him into more of a facilitator.
Adding in a talent like Ball would go a long way toward helping propel the Suns’ painstakingly long rebuild forward. And thinking of starting Ball alongside Booker, Ayton, Mikal Bridges, and (insert free agent power or Zion Williamson) here is certainly tantalizing.
Helping facilitate a deal for Los Angeles to land Davis while Phoenix gets Ball could go something like this example below:
Lakers - Anthony Davis, Darius Miller, Cheick Diallo, Tim Frazier, Ian Clark
Pelicans - Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, T.J. Warren or Josh Jackson, Ivica Zubac, Elie Okobo, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, 2019 1st via Lakers, 2020 Bucks pick via Suns, 2021 1st via Lakers, 2023 1st via Lakers
Suns - Lonzo Ball and Wesley Johnson
According to a league source, the Suns had Ball ranked No. 1 on their draft board over Markelle Fultz. Former general manager Ryan McDonough reportedly coveted him, as he was the biggest supporter of Ball’s in the Phoenix front office.
If Ball’s camp wants Ball to be on the Suns if he can’t be on the Lakers, that changes things for them. After the shocking Kristaps Porzingis trade to Dallas earlier today, stay tuned to Bright Side Of The Sun as we’ll update you further as we hear more on this fluid situation.