NBA

Lonzo Ball has had to put up with trade rumours all summer.

Lonzo Ball says he hasn't been affected by trade rumours

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Lonzo Ball has been the subject of trade rumours throughout the offseason as his future with the Los Angeles Lakers was being questioned. 

Some reports suggested that the franchise would've been willing to give him up in a package to acquire Kawhi Leonard but that offer was never made. 

Despite the speculation, it looks like the Lakers are determined to keep the point guard and still believe in his talent. 

Faith

They selected him with the number two overall pick last year and are hoping he takes a huge leap next season. 

The arrival of LeBron James will increase expectations in L.A. and add pressure on the entire roster. 

James' presence will take some of the focus off Ball but there's no doubt that his performances on the court will continue to be scrutinised. 

Ball's performances will be scrutinised again next year

If he fails to show significant improvement from his rookie campaign, the trade rumours are likely to resurface ahead of the February deadline. 

But the 20-year-old accepts that it's part of the game and refuses to let it affect him. 

"There’s trade rumors every year... Athletes in general, you’re never really 100 percent safe," he said in a recent episode of “Ball in the Family”.

"Wherever you’re at. Anything can happen, especially in the offseason, so all I can do is just make sure I’m ready to play at the best of my abilities."

Some fans have criticised the former UCLA product for not spending enough time working on his game this summer. 

In this social media-driven age, fans will doubt that players are working out if they don't see it posted on Instagram.

To prove that he is spending time in the gym, Ball also shared footage on the episode as he gears up for an important second season.

Ball had a rollercoaster rookie season in the NBA

We shouldn't forget, of course, that the youngster had knee surgery earlier in the summer and is likely to be on a strict programme in order to get back to full health in time for training camp later this month. 

With his well-documented shooting struggles last year, there's a keen interest to see if he'll change his unorthodox stroke.

Some recent clips gave us an indication that he might have a new shooting form. 

But it's hard to come to any conclusions over short videos and Lakers fans will just have to wait until pre-season to see if Lonzo has indeed tweaked his shot.

CLICK HERE to listen to Episode Two of the new GiveMeSport NBA podcast, featuring New York Times senior writer Marc Stein. Subscribe for all future episodes.

Topics:
Lonzo Ball
Pacific Division
Western Conference
L.A. Lakers
LeBron James
NBA

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