NBA

Patrick Beverley.

Patrick Beverley can't wait to guard Lonzo Ball on opening night

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Lonzo Ball will face the most pressure of any rookie next season due to the hype that has surrounded the youngster for months.

The 19-year-old is already a household name despite not making his NBA debut yet.

That is largely down to the work of his father LaVar Ball who has gone to extreme lengths to promote his son.

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The point guard was selected by his hometown Los Angeles Lakers with the second overall pick in this year's draft and the anticipation in the city has been crazy.

After languishing in mediocrity in recent years, coupled with superstar Kobe Bryant retiring, Laker nation has been crying out for its next star and they believe they have it with Ball.

Purple and Gold fans sold out Summer League arenas just to catch a glimpse of Lonzo and he didn't disappoint.

In his first taste of action as a Laker, Ball led the team to the Summer League championship and claimed the MVP award.

2017 Las Vegas Summer League Los Angeles Lakers v Dallas Mavericks

His regular season debut will come against cross-city rivals the Los Angeles Clippers and he will have a tough matchup immediately in the form of All-Defensive guard Patrick Beverley.

LaVar made an outlandish statement earlier this year by saying Lonzo was better than Stephen Curry and he doubled down on this during the week and stated that the Golden State Warriors wouldn't want to guard him either.

Beverley, however, will not back down from that challenge and took to Twitter to fire a warning to the Lakers rookie and his father.

"But imma guard him the first game and we will see about that!!!," he posted.

The 29-year-old is known for his rugged defence and was rightly recognised for his efforts on that end of the floor by being selected to the NBA's All-Defensive First Team last season.

Earlier in the offseason, he was traded to the Clippers as part of the huge deal that sent Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets.

There is certainly a target on the back of Lonzo going into the upcoming season and he will get a welcome to the NBA moment when he faces Beverley who is a relentless defender who gives headaches to the best of players.

Their encounter at Staples Center on October 19 is sure to be a sell-out and is already one of the most eagerly anticipated games of the new campaign.

Topics:
Blake Griffin
LA Clippers
Pacific Division
Western Conference
NBA
LA Lakers
Kobe Bryant

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