Podcast: LONZO! and the KCP Acquisition

Darius Soriano —  July 14, 2017

In the latest Laker Film Room Podcast, Pete and I talk Lonzo Ball’s impressive play and breakdown what we’re seeing in his game that has us questioning the last time we saw such a unique player. We get into his transcendent passing, how he thinks the game, and how he’s having such a huge impact even though his outside shot isn’t falling. If you’re looking for Lonzo love, we’ve got you covered.

In the latter part of our conversation, we get into the Kentavious Caldwell-Pope signing, how we think he’ll pair with Lonzo in the backcourt, what he skills he brings to the table, and where we think he can take a step forward in his own game for this Lakers team. Really fun conversation in this one. Click through to listen to the entire post.

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Darius Soriano

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to Podcast: LONZO! and the KCP Acquisition

  1. Rick in Seattle July 14, 2017 at 10:12 am

    What is the status of the David Nwaba waiver? Hasn’t the 48 hours passed? Was he picked up, or is he free to resign with Lakers?


  2. I’m looking forward for the 2018-2019 team lineup of :

    PG – Ball / Caruso /
    SG – Ingram / KCP / Hart
    SF – PG13 / Kuzma /
    PF – LBJ / Nance
    C – Cousins / Zubac / Bryant


  3. Lonzo is much better even, than many of us to were jazzed on him in the beginning.

    He can play defense, has an excellent mid range game, And, can be a high scoring guard.

    Both Philly and Boston were good to us, Again. I suppose it’s our natural place in the universe to beat them, even when they beat themselves.

    Lonzo, the first player in summer league history, to record a triple double, and he did it twice !

    Now to listen to my favorite pod casters, Darius and Pete !


  4. …has an excellent mid range game…

    Hmm…? Statistically speaking he has no mid range game. All his points are at the rim or beyond the arch. Look at his stats from UCLA and through the 1st four games of summer league.


    • I am fuming about losing Nwaba to the Bulls. I wish him the best, he’ll be a productive player for them. Tariq will do well back in Houston too, a great pickup for them. Good thing we got some pretty decent new players to take the sting off.


      • @Alexander. I feel your pain. I was waiting anxiously to hear about his fate, and now I’m super bummed. He was never going to be a superstar, but I like the kid, like his story, am convinced he would contribute, and hoped he’d be the next Coop for the foreseeable future.


    • Statistically speaking, Lonzo, despite an atrocious first game, has some of the most impressive guard SL stats we have ever seen. No, we haven’t seen much of his mid-range, but his layups are nearly automatic despite high level of difficulty, and every aspect of his game (short of 3’s, for now) looks better than we had even hoped. Try to find some joy in the Lakers getting their next transcendent talent since 1996.


    • Umm, don’t confuse no sample size for no midrange game. That stat (or lackthereof) actually is awesome. It means he mitigates taking inefficient shots (midrange) by either being able to get to the hole or take the open 3. As a 19 year old we can rest assured he’s not the finished product so can we please not talk about deficiencies (real or perceived) as finite? Just enjoy him. The games have a pace and control to them similar to when Lebron played his first summer league.

      His percentage at the rim while at UCLA was something like a ridiculous 70% and his 3’s was over 40%. He doesnt force a bad shot. Once he finds his rhythm, timing, and adjusts to the distance he will start knocking them down. Majority of his misses rattled in an out or were a little short. No real bricks, and the fact that he confidently let them fly reaffirms he is a shooter. Most were open too. He calmly splashed 9 of his 12 free throws too.

      One thing SL had shown us is that he is in fact athletic and had no trouble penetrating. We’ll see, it will be a long process and he will have to learn and grow stronger in his first 2 years but he is legit.

      So many people try to focus on what he can’t do or might not do well (yet), and are missing special moments in front of their eyes.


    • Forget the statistics, watch his game !


  5. Because a player takes the statistically preferred shot doesn’t mean they are bad at other types of shots. Lonzo doesn’t need to take the mid-range shot if the defense isn’t forcing him to take that shot. He is a young player who has one of the best vision we have seen in a long time. I wouldn’t dwell on his weaknesses today; instead let’s celebrate his strengths and hope the coaching staff helps him continue to grow as a player. I expect this guy to be the next great Laker.


    • Right – he’s taking threes and shots at the rim – high efficiency shots. Those are the shots he should be taking. Again: high efficiency shots. Reminds me of another “knock” on him: he was low usage at UCLA. Um, that’s good!
      I’m looking forward to seeing how he sets up Randle, Clarkson, Ingram, Zu for great looks.


  6. Nwaba is in the same category as Tarik Black-it would be nice to have them, but can’t always keep every guy you want. KCP is a better option all around, don’t know how much playing time Nwaba would have gotten anyway. Good luck to him…


  7. ..and Tarik Black to the Rockets. He’ll give them quality minutes, and do some of the dirty work. Good luck to him as well, class act….


  8. Fun and interesting podcast, as usual !

    Thanks for all the hard work and insights Darius and Pete !


  9. Looks like the fan juice is spiked again.


  10. So far the LONZO! experience is everything that was advertised even down to the LaVar drama. Lonzo’s passing translates well to the NBA and he has added some wrinkles to his college game. It is incredible that Boston passed on him and Philadelphia keeps working on self-inflicted wounds so I am not so surprised in their case. If Lonzo can keep a level head on his shoulders, he will be a key foundation player for the Lakers.

    I am wondering if Zubac is having difficulty adjusting to the speed of the Summer League Lakers. He did well last year once he could establish post position and then get a pass, Lonzo’s offense is more based on movement and constant pressure. Maybe JaVale McGee would be a better fit. He is a better rim protector and can run in the open court.


  11. Tarik signed by Rockets on a Bi-A contract 1 yr roughly $1.686m. I presumed Bulls have same offer or part of their mid level exception. Surely FO thinks they will not have enough p/t with Lakers, it would be a huge help as an insurance starters are down. Lopez and KCP have had injuries last season. Both ex Lakers can give 100% hustle, dunks and memtorship in character building for Zu, Thomas or Hart. They offered talents at a measly costs when Laker bottom dwellers.

    Will Lakers match Rockets and Bulls offer? IMO, they are much better than Clark and Canaan on D. Lakers invested a lot for Nash who just used Lakers as his rehab place. On Laker coaches who did not complete their services.
    Next to go would be Tyler Ennis, I don’t think Lonzo could do it all.


  12. Rick in Seattle July 16, 2017 at 3:03 pm

    Sorry to see Nwaba get picked up by Chicago. But the SG position right now is pretty full with KCP, Clarkson and Hart. Think the teams still has more of a need for a veteran backup PG.
    If Ball were to get hurt who would step in? Clarkson seems to be the only option right now.

    Like Fred (above) I’m beginning to have some doubts as to whether Zubac can improve his quickness to the point where he can keep up with a fast-flowing offense. if he can’t, then there is no reason to keep him. Dont see this team slowing things down with a deliberate half-court offense which would better use Zubac’s current skill set.

    Gotta believe that Magic & Pelinka are still looking at player improvement. Lots of teams are making player changes. Detroit, Utah, Brooklyn, Atlanta, Miami–all still looking to improve.
    Still a couple of major moves coming if NY ever completes the Carmello trade.

    Cleveland has been very quiet, while Boston continues to get a LOT better as does HOUSTON.

    Should be an exciting year…