Fri, Oct 12, 2018 - Page 16 News List

LeBron James, Lonzo Ball play together for first time

AP

The Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James, right, defends as Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors drives during their game at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Wednesday.

Photo: AFP

LeBron James watched Lonzo Ball play in Las Vegas during the NBA Summer League last year, taking in a Los Angeles Lakers’ game from a baseline seat as a spectator.

He had a better view on Wednesday.

James and Ball were on-court teammates for the first time when the Lakers beat the Golden State Warriors 123-113 in Las Vegas.

Ball did not start the pre-season contest, but replaced Rajon Rondo just 2 minutes, 13 seconds into the game.

“It’s just fun to have our full group,” James said.

James and Ball did not play much. Ball has been recovering from a knee issue and it was his first appearance this pre-season.

James did not want to burden his new point guard with a lot of expectations, so he was keeping his approach simple.

“He plays basketball,” James said of Ball before the game. “He knows how to play basketball.”

It was James’ first game against the Warriors since last season’s NBA Finals, when his second stint as a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers ended with Golden State sweeping their way to a second consecutive championship.

However, he downplayed the exhibition being any extension of his rivalry with the Warriors, or the rivalry between the California clubs.

“Pre-season game,” James said.

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