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LaVar Ball: I prefer Lonzo with Lakers to learn from Magic Johnson

Lonzo Ball's father clarified statements made Saturday to an Arizona radio station about the UCLA star playing for only the Los Angeles Lakers.

"All I said was that my boy is going to play for the Lakers, and I'm going to speak it into existence," LaVar Ball told ESPN on Saturday night. "I want him to be a Laker, but I wasn't saying he's only going to play for the Lakers."

Earlier Saturday, Ball told KCUB Sports Radio 1290 in Tucson that he wants Lonzo to play for Jeanie Buss' franchise so much that he would discourage other teams from picking his son in this summer's NBA draft.

"I want him to be a Laker," Ball told KCUB. "He's gonna be the first one that's homegrown, and trust me, he'll do the same thing he's doing at UCLA."

In response to a question about the Lakers' hypothetically securing the third pick in the draft, the elder Ball told the radio station that he would tell the top two squads to avoid drafting his son.

Ball hedged that statement when speaking to ESPN.

"I'm not trying to say he won't play for a different team," he said. "But I'd like him to play for the Lakers because it's home, and I'd love him to learn from Magic [Johnson]. He's the best guard ever to me, and nobody better for Lonzo to learn from than Magic Johnson."

Johnson, the Lakers' new president of basketball operations, sat in the front row at Pauley Pavilion and watched Lonzo Ball lead UCLA to a come-from-behind win over Oregon on Feb. 9.

When asked about his father's statement, Lonzo Ball said, "All I do is go out and play basketball, man."

Ball finished with 11 points, eight assists, five rebounds and two steals in his team's 77-72 win at Arizona on Saturday. He is averaging 15.0 points, 6.3 rebounds and 7.5 assists this season for the Bruins.

LaVar Ball also recently proclaimed his son to be better than Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry.

"I have the utmost confidence in what my boy is doing," Ball told TMZ on Feb 15. "He's better than Steph Curry to me. Put Steph Curry on UCLA's team right now, and put my boy on Golden State, and watch what happens."

ESPN's Jeff Goodman and Myron Medcalf contributed to this report.