Published: Sat, January 06, 2018
Sport | By Cameron Gross

Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball to return after six-game absence

Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball to return after six-game absence

But this time they came away with their biggest comeback of the season. With Ball manning the point, the Lakers usually position themselves within striking distance of teams ahead of them. Has he been more good than bad? Randle also has been the subject of trade discussions by the Lakers.

The Lakers' decision on whether or not to take Lonzo Ball on their two-game road trip this weekend is a little more complicated than it normally would be.

Ohm Youngmisuk has covered the Giants, Jets and the National Football League since 2006.

Lonzo Ball (shoulder) was practiced fully on Thursday and is questionable for Friday's game vs. Charlotte. His presence alone revamped Steve Alford's UCLA offense past year as a team that ran a run-and-gun offense, and that play style has carried over naturally to the Lakers.

Despite the third quarter push, the Lakers succumbed to another fourth quarter melt down. "We're going to get back in the gym tomorrow and we're going to work", Walton said.

The Hornets' last game was a victory against the Sacramento Kings. Overall, Ball was averaging 16 points, 7.2 assists and 7.3 rebounds during that stretch.

Ball is recovering from a left shoulder sprain he suffered last week against Portland.

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The second overall pick averaged 10 points, 7.1 assists and 6.9 rebounds through his first 31 games, and the Lakers record stood at 11-20.

The Lakers came out shooting 1-10 from the field and 0-3 from the three-point line leading into the team's first timeout. The Bulls (3-12) never recovered. Those close to the elder Ball indicated to ESPN that he meant that the coaches could be harder on his son rather than criticizing the Lakers' staff. But he still was effective in the first half Friday night. Like a Draymond Green, he won't wow anyone with eye-popping stats, but he will help his team win games by putting up stats all across the board. Ever since his high school days as a five-star recruit from Chino Hills, Ball broke headlines with his smooth, yet exhausting pace as a point guard who generated instant offense the moment he touched the ball in the backcourt.

Certainly, the Lakers' defense looked as if it were already on break.

On the other side, the Lakers are 4-1 against the spread in their last five games against Eastern Conference opponents and are 5-2-1 at the betting window in their last eight games versus Southeast opponents. But a cast of Lakers came to life after halftime.

The Hornets rank first in steals allowed per game (6.6) while the Lakers rank 24th (8.3).

Luckily for the Lakers, they are starting to get healthier. The Lakers can often thank subs like and Randle for that fight. The Grizzlies big man added 14 points and four rebounds.

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