LaMelo Ball Matches LeBron James and Luka Doncic with Spectacular Feat

Published 03/02/2021, 2:16 AM EST
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 was one of the most exciting prospects to enter the NBA in recent memory. Coming from the infamous Ball family, LaMelo had seen his brother Lonzo be a high draft pick in 2017. In 2020, LaMelo went third overall to Michael Jordan’s Charlotte Hornets. And now he is making a strong case for why he should be the Rookie of the Year this season.

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LaMelo Ball matches LeBron and Luka

LaMelo Ball averaged 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 6.7 assists for the month of February. He became the first player since LeBron James and Luka Doncic to average a 20-6-6 stat-line for an entire calendar month of their rookie year. James and Doncic had done it multiple times in their rookie seasons, and Ball finds himself in elite company now.

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In February, LaMelo Ball averaged 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 6.7 assists. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Ball became the 3rd teenager to average 20-6-6 in a calendar month (min. 10 games). He joined Luka Doncic and LeBron James, who each did this multiple times. pic.twitter.com/r5eiTIWQCw

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) March 1, 2021

Many expect LaMelo Ball to walk away with the coveted Rookie of the Year trophy, and few can argue that he isn’t deserving of it. Since his arrival, the Charlotte Hornets have experienced a real turnaround in their fortunes. Ball and new signing Gordon Hayward have completely transformed the Hornets, who now have a chance at a playoff position this season.

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Currently, Ball is averaging 15 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists for the season. Ball has been a revelation this year, helping many players in the Hornets find their best form. Players like Terry Rozier and Devonte’ Graham have found more success after having LaMelo on their side. And Gordon Hayward has been justifying his huge contract thanks to his connection with Ball on the court.

LaMelo is transforming the Hornets

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Currently, the Hornets have the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference. If they are able to hold this position by the end of the season, they will have a chance to reach the playoffs through a play-in game with the seventh seed. It is a stark contrast to the team’s performance last year, where they finished as one of the worst teams in the NBA and missed the playoffs.

Jan 14, 2021; Tampa, Florida, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball (2) brings the ball up the court during the first quarter of a game against the Toronto Raptors at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mary Holt-USA TODAY Sports
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Can LaMelo Ball lead the Hornets to the playoffs? He has been playing some of the best basketball of his young career so far, and the Hornets are benefiting from his recent run of form. However, he will have to continue to deliver on a nightly basis, given how competitive the lower half of the Eastern Conference is.

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Aaditya Krishnamurthy

1044 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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