Even when he doesn’t have the ball in his hands to run an offense or brick a jump shot, Lonzo Ball can always make a difference as a defender.
His long arms, quick feet and disruptive tendencies make him one of the better defensive guards in the league at just 21 years old. Ball led the Lakers in steals this season (1.5 per game) and had eight games in which he recorded three or more thefts.
Ball is still a phenomenal passer, even if this season he had fewer opportunities to showcase that skill. He had seven games of double-digit assists. A team with LeBron, Lonzo and Rondo, however, should’ve been a nightly highlight reel of assists.
If Ball is still with the Lakers next season, perhaps new head coach Frank Vogel can find more ways to take advantage of Ball’s inherent court vision and superior passing. It cannot be a bad thing for Ball to work with a coaching staff that includes Jason Kidd.
Scoring was far from a strong suit for Ball this season, but he is a good finisher in transition and above the rim. Not many point guards in the league are on the receiving end of alley-oops in a half-court set, but the 6’6″ Ball has the height and hops to make that part of his arsenal.