The Charlotte Hornets were in need of a star… they were in need of a player to catch the attention of the national media but also help win games; they were in need of hitting on another one of their draft picks. But they haven’t always found that same success in past drafts.
This is why, when the Hornets earned the number three pick, it was going to be 1) interesting to see who took who before Charlotte and 2) who would be left from the top three prospects and if they would in fact take them with the pick. Now, I myself will admit, that between the top three prospects of Anthony Edwards, James Wiseman, and Lamelo Ball, I was looking at James Wiseman as the potential fix for the Hornets.
Charlotte seemed to need, at that time, a presence down low to man the paint and with Wiseman’s 7’0 frame, his mobility, and impact on both ends of the floor… it could be a recipe for success. But, Wiseman wasn’t there for the Hornets. Lamelo Ball ended up being the pick and may have been the pick all along, but coming into the season, it was going to be interesting to see how Ball could handle the NBA level early on and how he could mesh with the team, as well as what role he would fill.
Well, it seems pretty safe to say that Ball has handled the opportunity well, as the 6’7 rookie is showing what so many had seen before. With the blend of length, vision, feel, scoring, and being able to use him in multiple situations, Ball has continued to show that he could be the star that Charlotte was hoping for.
It has been tough around Charlotte, especially since the loss of Kemba Walker, understanding what Charlotte offers and where the organization may be heading. Now, one can say that Charlotte has done a really good job in finding talent in the last few drafts, grabbing PJ Washington, Devonte Graham, the Martin twins, and others.
The numbers so far have been pretty impressive, averaging 12.8 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 5.9 assists on the season and just sealed his name into the books recently vs. Atlanta Hawks, becoming the youngest NBA player to record a triple-double. Finishing the night with 22 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 assists, along with just one turnover, Ball is quickly proving to all his doubters and making a strong statement early on in his NBA career. And though it still is early in what he may be in the coming years, Ball is making the Charlotte Hornets must-see TV and is looking to be the star they have been searching for recently.