LaVar Ball pushes back on Lonzo Ball-Jason Kidd comparisons: ‘He’s a new breed’
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Given his exceedingly unique playstyle, there were very few comparisons for Lonzo Ball coming into the NBA. The two names tossed around most consistently were Magic Johnson – largely for his passing ability – and Jason Kidd. The latter of the two was far closer to the prospect Ball was coming out of UCLA, even if it was still a lofty comparison.
While Ball has shown flashes, he hasn’t proven to be the player Kidd was even early in his career. Ball hasn’t been the scorer Kidd was with the former Cal product averaging 16.6 points per game his sophomore season. But even then, Ball has shown some flashes to warrant the comparisons to Kidd.
Except to LaVar Ball.
Ever the one to speak his mind, LaVar was asked in an interview with Heavy about the comparisons between his eldest son and Kidd, a California basketball legend. And not surprisingly, LaVar had a lot to say.
“Everybody would like to compare that to him. I mean, Jason Kidd passes the ball, light-skinned, big guard…he has to get it from somebody, he’s more athletic than that. He shoots better than that. He’s hungrier than him. I’m trying to see where the comparison is. But you know to make a story, that’s what the media do – ‘Oh he’s like this guy, he’s like that guy’…No, like I said my boy is a new breed.”
Through two seasons, Kidd averaged more points and rebounds and similar assists and steals while shooting nearly identical percentages from the field. One of the big differences was substantial growth from year one to year two for Kidd and that he played 160 games through two seasons while Ball only played 99.
Their playstyles are similar through two seasons, though. Both have relatively similar usage rates with high assist rates, though Kidd has higher percentages in both.
But even then, comparing Lonzo and Kidd is not fair to the former, regardless of what LaVar may say. Kidd is a Hall of Famer and Lonzo is a third-year guard finding his rhythm for the first time in his career. Comparing the two only continues to add more unnecessary pressure to Lonzo.