De’Aaron Fox went off against UCLA to ‘shut LaVar Ball up’
The outstanding Sweet 16 contest between UCLA and Kentucky in March was highlighted by De’Aaron Fox’s memorable 39-point game in the Wildcats’ 86-75 win over the Bruins. Fox thoroughly outplayed his Bruins counterpart Lonzo Ball in the game on both ends of the floor. Now the former Kentucky guard says part of his motivation that game was to shut LaVar Ball up.
In a profile on Fox published by SI’s Andrew Sharp Thursday, Fox explained his mindset ahead of the UCLA tournament game.
“Kill mode all the time,” Fox said of his mindset for that game. “Shut Lavar Ball up.”
LaVar Ball, of course, is Lonzo’s outspoken father, who made noise all throughout UCLA’s season about how good his son is and how great of a pro he’ll become. That certainly helped lead Fox to put together a monster game against the Bruins.
Ball and Fox are competing to go higher in the draft, and the Lakers are said to have interest in both players at No. 2 overall.
But what this story shows us is there is yet another reason to have some caution about drafting Lonzo. Not only can his father be a pain in the rear to deal with, but LaVar’s big talking ways also puts a bulls eye on his son’s back and has the unintended consequence of bringing out the best in opponents.