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Lakers GM Rob Pelinka challenging Lonzo Ball to build muscle

Rob Pelinka, Lonzo Ball

In his rookie campaign, Los Angeles Lakers point guard Lonzo Ball showed flashes of promise that he could develop into a special talent for the next decade.

However, Ball also struggled with his health, as he missed a sizeable chunk of the season due to injuries. It is something that general manager Rob Pelinka wants the 20-year-old to focus on, wanting him to build more muscle to withstand the physical toll that comes with playing an entire NBA season.

“Some of the great players in the game… I am not going to use their names because we are not allowed to talk about players on other teams, but we sat down with a picture of an MVP and First-Team All-NBA type players. We said here was their body when they were 20, and here’s their body when they were 23 when they became All-Stars or MVPs. What do you see in that transformation? It was a commitment to the weight room and getting strong. For us to succeed, Lonzo knows that he’s got to physically take an 82-game season.”

In the latter months of the season, Ball struggled with injuries as he missed a total of 30 games that ranged from a left shoulder sprain, a sore left knee, and the last eight contests due to a left knee contusion. Much of these injuries were minor ones that built up over the course of the year, with his body still adjusting to the NBA game and workload over 82 games.

This should push Ball to focus on taking the next step of his physical development so that he can focus more on his overall skill set, which also needs much work. He has proven to be an all-around talent, but he had notable issues with his shooting from the floor and the free-throw line.

The offseason will provide him plenty of time to work on all of those aspects of his individual game and body. The Lakers are hoping for a major transformation from Ball that will lead to a large amount of success on the court next season.