NBA Draft: Winners and Losers


LaVar Ball, Big Baller Brand — Winner

He tried to tell you this was happening before it was happening, and he did so over and over and over and over again. His boy, Lonzo, is a member of the Los Angeles Lakers just like he wanted.

Everything that LaVar Ball has managed to say with a microphone in his face over the last handful of months has led basketball fans to his laboratory in Chino Hills. The laboratory where Big Ballers are made and Big Ballers get paid, or something like that. 

The Ball house is where at least one top flight basketball player has been produced — with more to come, allegedly — and the scorching hot takes were said before they became famous. Both, of course, created by the madness LaVar Ball.

You can hate all you want, but draft night was a quick glimpse into what reality has become for the Ball’s — flash photography, ESPN stalking LaVar for any sort of sound bite, and free publicity for Big Baller Brand in the largest media outlet in all of professional sports. 

But what gets lost in everything that has transpired the last few months, is that it all hinged on Lonzo playing professionally for the Lakers.  A boy and his ludicrous, wildly-inappropriate, yet supproitve, unapologetic father achieved a dream together. LaVar’s boy is a LA Laker. And together, they will recreate showtime. 

Sacramento Kings — Both

I have mixed emotions on what Sacramento was able to do at the draft. 

First off, I was really excited that they gambled on Giles. He’s an injury riddled big with immense upside if he’s able to stay on the court. Secondly, Justin Jackson is a safe player who will have a 10-year career in this league. 

Obviously Fox is the headliner of the Kings’ draft, and he’s going to be fantastic. Like everybody says, if Fox can find a consistent jump shot — or any sort of jumper that’s formidable — he’s going to become an All-Star level player in the NBA. His athleticism, defense, and personality promise an excellent ceiling. 

Fox was responsible for my favorite moment of the draft. While being interviewed before the draft started, Fox essentially said he doesn’t care who is drafted before him because at some point they’ll have to play each other. In other words, Lonzo Ball can’t hide. 

However, there is another side to what Sacramento did. While I liked the pairing of Jackson and Giles, I was heavily disappointed they didn’t take Malik Monk with the 10th pick.

Taking Fox and Monk from Kentucky and placing them in their backcourt would have been so awesome. Yes, they have Buddy Hield. Yes, they’d be small across the board. Yes, Monk is probably your sixth man, but you need to play three guards in the NBA. Having a lineup with three different guys with dynamic skills, the ability to handle the ball and to create for others is difficult to find. 

I think Malik Monk is the second coming of Bradley Beal, at worst. You take that player and figure out your roster later if it doesn’t work out. 

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