Hornets’ LaMelo Ball Reveals His Special Nickname for Michael Jordan

Published 03/17/2021, 3:40 AM EDT
Feb 7, 2021; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball (2) looks to pass ahead of Washington Wizards guard Raul Neto (19) in the second half at Spectrum Center. The Charlotte Hornets won 119-97. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports


LaMelo Ball is one of the brightest rookies in the NBA today. Currently, Ball plays for the Charlotte Hornets, a team that he has made his own. Since his arrival, the Hornets look a much different side than they did in the years past. Ball has been putting up excellent performances on the regular. And it appears his relationship with Hornets owner Michael Jordan has been developing steadily.

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LaMelo Ball shares Michael Jordan’s nickname

LaMelo Ball spoke to the press recently and when asked about his relationship with Michael Jordan, LaMelo shared an interesting nickname he has for ‘His Airness’. Ball also revealed how he has been watching highlights from Michael Jordan’s legendary career, which he couldn’t witness live.

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Ball said, “I call him ‘Unc’… But yeah, I’ve seen highlights and stuff, my pops used to watch them and all that, so yeah I definitely seen him growing up.”

Ball has been a fantastic pickup for the Charlotte Hornets. Michael Jordan was very impressed with LaMelo’s ability, enough to give his blessing to the franchise to draft him with the third overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft. Since then, LaMelo has repaid the faith Jordan showed him with excellent performances that have helped elevate the Hornets franchise into being in line for playoff contention.

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For the season, LaMelo is averaging 15 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists. Currently, LaMelo is the frontrunner for the Rookie of the Year race, with very few rookies coming close to matching him so far. Furthermore, he has formed a dynamic tandem with the new signing, Gordon Hayward. The duo has led the franchise to a much-improved record from last season.

LaMelo – Rookie of the Year?

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Just recently, Ball was made the undisputed starter for the Hornets. His excellent performances coming off the bench garnered enough faith for him to get the nod to start these games. Ball is a fantastic point-guard, who can score and create from any part of the field. One of the highlights from this season has been LaMelo showing his passing range, vision, and creativity on the court.

Feb 7, 2021; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball (2) shoots over Washington Wizards guard Raul Neto in the second half at Spectrum Center. The Charlotte Hornets won 119-97. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports
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Will LaMelo Ball win Rookie of the Year? He is currently the undisputed front-runner and looks likely to take the accolade home at the end of the season. Furthermore, he is leading the charge for the Hornets as they look to make the playoffs this season. If LaMelo can lead the franchise to the playoffs this year, he would be crowned the franchise star within just a year of his arrival.

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Aaditya Krishnamurthy

1167 articles

Aaditya Krishnamurthy is an NBA & NFL journalist for EssentiallySports, before which he worked at BusinessWorld magazine. He has been a fan of Basketball for over 10 years now, since Shaquille O’Neal was a Phoenix Suns player. During his time at Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts, he started a sports magazine for the college called the Overtime Tribune and hosted the Overtime Tribune Podcast until he graduated.

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