Mavericks coach destroys ESPN 'disgrace' over LaVar Ball

Even with starting point guard Lonzo Ball back in the lineup after an 11-day injury absence, the Lakers (11-27) simply couldn't hit shots to begin the game, which bled into their defense.

Carlisle said that ESPN has been "a great" partner with the National Basketball Association.

"I view the ESPN article as a disgrace, quite honestly", Carlisle said. "Luke Walton is a terrific young coach who is bringing along a young team". And it's a hard task, and if you don't believe it just ask me. "They're giving us what they have and we're going to keep working and we'll be fine".

This comes despite ESPN's December reports that LaVar was asked by the Lakers front office to tone down his criticisms of the head coach. Part of that partnership is - the coaches do a lot of things to help them with access, interview and all those kinds of things. And in exchange for that they should back up the coaches.

Ball, the outspoken father of Lakers rookie point guard Lonzo Ball, told ESPN's Jeff Goodman that Walton has lost control of the team and players "don't want to play for him".

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"You can see they're not playing for Luke no more", LaVar said, via ESPN. "They don't want to play for him", Ball told ESPN on Sunday.

Walton added, "I feel very secure in my job status right now". "Two years ago he took a veteran team and led them to 24 wins in a row, which is an wonderful accomplishment".

Carlisle is doing his job in advocating for his professional brethren here, but this isn't an ESPN problem, it's a Lakers problem. "To have to deal with these kind of ignorant distractions is deplorable". Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle, who's also the head of the coaches association, was less than pleased.

"You have my quote", Carlisle responded. "That's what they do.' And it's our job as coaches and an organization to do what's best for our team and our players". That's what I'm saying.

The Lakers did not immediately make available general manager Rob Pelinka, who attended their Sunday morning shootaround at Staples Center. They held a team meeting on December 28 to air out myriad issues, from players who were unhappy about roles, minutes and rotations, to the direction the team is taking with its focus on signing two star free agents next summer. The elder Ball has said that the Lakers' coaching staff is "soft" and doesn't know how to coach his son, and he expressed his displeasure with how Walton was using his son in the fourth quarter of games.

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