Ball focused on health, not rumors: 'If I get traded, then I get traded'
Andrew D. Bernstein / National Basketball Association / Getty

Lonzo Ball's main priority heading into the summer is fully recovering from the ankle sprain and subsequent bone bruise that prematurely ended his 2018-19 campaign with the Los Angeles Lakers.

That goal will remain the same regardless of which organization he plays for after Ball's name was featured heavily in trade rumors ahead of February's deadline.

"At the end of the day, you can only control the things that you can control," Ball told The Athletic's Shams Charania. "If I get traded, then I get traded. But I'm going to be ready to go. The goal is to be the best player I can for whichever team."

The 21-year-old point guard was one of several young Lakers players linked to the New Orleans Pelicans as Los Angeles pushed to land superstar big man Anthony Davis. A deal ultimately failed to materialize once it became clear the Lakers wouldn't meet New Orleans' substantial demands.

Los Angeles recently shut Ball down for good after physicians re-evaluated his ankle. Injuries are nothing new to him after knee and shoulder ailments cost him 30 games during his rookie year.

"I'm very, very motivated," said Ball. "I want to be the best I can be. I'm looking forward to this summer. I don't look at it as added pressure, because I haven't had a full summer yet to dedicate to myself. I have to keep working on my craft. I'm just happy that I'm going to be healthy.

"It's been frustrating. This is the second year that this has happened. But I have to stay positive, stay motivated."

Ball last took the floor Jan. 19 against the Houston Rockets. The 31-36 Lakers, meanwhile, sit 6 1/2 games back of the Western Conference's eighth seed.

Ball focused on health, not rumors: 'If I get traded, then I get traded'
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