Lakers Notes: Ball, Kuzma, LeBron, Mykhailiuk

Lonzo Ball isn’t showing any effects of the knee injury that sidelined him for most of the summer, writes Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN. Bell had surgery in July to fix a torn left meniscus, but he has been operating at full speed in training camp, impressing new teammate LeBron James.

“I didn’t know he was gonna be full go so fast,” James said. “He’s been going through live drills the last 2½ days. His bounce is there. His speed is there.”

Ball tried to address his knee problem with platelet-rich plasma injections early in the offseason before deciding surgery was necessary. His summer was filled with weight training and film sessions, and he wasn’t cleared for a full-contact practice until Thursday. Coach Luke Walton said he was “shocked” by Ball’s progress, but still plans to be careful with the second-year point guard.

“We’re gonna be patient,” Walton said. “No need to rush it right now. We’ll put minutes restrictions on him as he starts coming back in the preseason. And everything will be, ‘How do you feel?’ the next day, ‘How do you feel?’ that night. As long we keep checking those off and he’s fine, the minutes restrictions will go up and up until we decide to get rid of it altogether.”

There’s more news from L.A.:

  • Kyle Kuzma added weight over the summer and will be used at center occasionally in small-ball lineups, Youngmisuk adds in a separate story. Kuzma hasn’t played center since high school, but he’s confident he can make it work. “You got to be the anchor of the defense, that five position calls out pick-and-rolls, screens,” Kuzma said. “The five is usually around the rim so you see, you know, everything in that backcourt, everything. So watching film has really helped in that area of trying to be that type of anchor when I am playing the five.”
  • The plan to keep James on a limited schedule during the preseason may be a mistake, suggests Martin Rogers of USA Today. At 33, James may want to conserve his energy for the regular season, Rogers writes, but he also needs game conditions to create chemistry with his new teammates.
  • The Lakers feel like they might have gotten another “steal of the draft” in second-rounder Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk, relays Mike Trudell of Those were the words used at media day by veteran teammate Alex Caruso, who said the Lakers may have found another gem, just as they did with Kuzma last year.
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13 thoughts on “Lakers Notes: Ball, Kuzma, LeBron, Mykhailiuk

  1. Dionis

    Don’t get comfortable Kuz LeGM will be texting Anthony Davis all season and get you traded.

    • imindless

      I agree. I am a die hard laker fan but cant stand lebron. Seeing lebrons attitude toward reports has made me believe that if and when the lakers sputter legm will have the youth traded for aging veterans. I think they plan to showcase there youth thia year and trade accordingly. Wouldnt be suprised if kuzma has a huge year and is delt for like you said davis next offseason.

      • Dionis

        It’s an audition for all those young guys, they know they can’t get comfortable.

      • x%sure

        “lebrons attitude towards reports”? Translation please.

        If hate for Lebron causes hate for anyone incoming, you have a lot of hate coming. Ignoring the role of Pelinka & Johnson and wanting Kuzma more than Davis is insane. Check the path you’re on and who is leading you, a troll.

  2. Today’s Washington Post says Baker Mayfield making Cleveland fans forget about LeBron. Go Browns!

  3. Z-A

    This Lakers roster makes you believe they have no clue what they are doing. Lot of 1 year deals lot of Hope that they can attract a younger star to play Robin to LBJ. They were smart in letting Randle go bc he isnt a stretch 4, they cant pay a guy 20M to not have 3 capabilities. They messed up tho not going after Boogie, maybe could have gotten him on a discount. Huge risk bc look at Brand pre and post injury, same position same age same injury. But if you’re the Lakers hes the best big you could have bought this offseason and think with year 2 and 3 in mind.

  4. Z-A, they could have gone after Cousins all they wanted, he was signing in Golden State. Apparently he turned down bigger offers to do so.

    • Z-A

      He turned down offers he thought didnt fit his level of talent. He felt disrespected.

      • bravesfan88

        Not just that, he also wanted to “change/alter” his image, and the media/public’s perception of Boogie.

        He is simply hoping to prove his doubters wrong by playing a brand of unselfish basketball, playing in a successful, fast-paced system, proving he can fit well into any locker room, proving he is a winning player, and most importantly, proving to potential suitors he’s fully healthy going forward. Anywhere else, there would be pressure to play him earlier, but in GS, he can afford to sit and wait until he’s fully healthy.

        He knew this year would mostly be a slow year for him, so he wanted to optimize this season, with an eye looking forward to his next contact in free agency. He didn’t just want this to be a lost season for him, nor did he want to lock into a “below-market value” multi-year, bonus filled contract.

        His masterplan revolves around him hoping to use his time as a Warrior this season as a springboard in order to acquire a new max deal during next year’s free agency frenzy…It really isn’t all that complicated, it’s pretty simple to see all the reasons Boogie signed with Golden State..

        A bunch of fans are crying their front office didn’t go after Boogie hard enough, but after he didn’t initially receive a max deal or two, the facts are, it was Golden State he wanted to go to all along..

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