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It’s been a difficult start to his NBA career, so Lonzo Ball is preferring to look through the windshield instead of the rearview mirror.
The Los Angeles Lakers point guard is recovering Grade-3 sprain of his left ankle, suffered during a game against the Houston Rockets on Jan. 19, when he had to be carried off by teammates Lance Stephenson, and the since-traded Michael Beasley.
That, he told Shams Charania of The Athletic, will be his focus during the offseason.
“I’m very, very motivated,” Ball told Charania. “I want to be the best I can be. I’m looking forward to this summer. I don’t look at it as added pressure, because I haven’t had a full summer yet to dedicate to myself. I have to keep working on my craft. I’m just happy that I’m going to be healthy.
“It’s been frustrating. This is the second year that this has happened. But I have to stay positive, stay motivated.”
On @TheAthleticNBA: Lakers' Lonzo Ball opens up for first time since January and recent shutdown: "I'm very, very motivated … It's been frustrating. This is going to be a new summer, most definitely." https://t.co/UDZ2RnPrbK
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) March 13, 2019
As far as trade rumors go, Ball says he is taking the only approach he can to them — going about his business, meaning getting healthy and coming back 100 percent healthy, regardless of which uniform he dons next season.
“At the end of the day, you can only control the things that you can control,” he said. “If I get traded, then I get traded. But I’m going to be ready to go. The goal is to be the best player I can for whichever team.”
Ball, 21, averaged 9.9 points, 5.4 assists and 5.3 rebounds in 47 games on the season.
Since Ball’s injury, the Lakers (31-36) are 6-14 heading into a game Thursday night at Toronto.