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Does Lamelo Ball Deserve to Be in the NBA?

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LaMelo Ball

At one point in time, the Ball family became the most hated basketball personalities in the industry. Not because of the Ball brothers themselves, but their father Lavar due to his loudmouth and base-less comparison of his kids to prominent NBA players.

Sans Mr. Lavar Ball’s nonsense comments on everything, the Ball siblings, Lonzo and LaMelo at least, in my own opinion, are worthy of being on the world’s biggest basketball stage. 

Just a couple of days ago, one of the much-awaited faceoffs in this season occurred when Lonzo faced his little brother LaMelo in the New Orleans PelicansCharlotte Hornets showdown.

Lonzo and LaMelo squared off from the tipoff until the final buzzer sounded. But at the end, it was the youngest Ball who had the last laugh as he dropped a near-triple-double (12, 10, and 9) on Lonzo and the Pelicans.

Aside from flirting with a game-rare triple-double, LaMelo humiliated Lonzo with a step-back three-pointer in front of the latter’s outstretched arms that made the internet go wild and crazy.

Just a day after his duel with his brother, LaMelo put himself in the NBA record book as the youngest player who ever recorded a triple-double. The 19-year-old rookie helped the Hornets dismantle the Hawks with 22 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 assists.

The Charlotte Hornets are on a three-game winning streak and are currently at the joint 8th place of the Eastern Conference standings with a 5-5 win-loss record with the Brooklyn Nets and Cleveland Cavaliers.

In terms of individual performances, LaMelo is the Hornets’ third-leading scorer behind Gordon Hayward and Terry Rozier, with an average of 12.8 markers per game.

Apart from a significant scoring contribution, LaMelo displays his playmaking abilities with 5.9 assists per game or just a half-point behind fellow guard Devonte Graham while the rookie leads his team in the defensive department with 1.5 steals per game.

The NBA just reopened the season three weeks ago, where each team has only played ten games. It’s premature to tell that LaMelo will be an elite point guard of the league, especially that he’s still being haunted by his awful pre-season performances. But based on stats, the youngest among the Ball brothers is right on track.

On a side note, Hornets majority owner and NBA legend Michel Jordan won’t recommend LaMelo to his coaches and management team if he’s not capable of helping them achieve their goals and objectives.

On Monday, the Hornets will be playing the Knicks where LaMelo is still expected to continue his superb basketball game. Come Wednesday, Ball’s mettle will be tested as he faces super scorer Luca Dončić and the rest of the Dallas Mavericks.

If LaMelo can edge Luca in their anticipated mano-a-mano, the 2020 third-pick-overall might convert a few of his haters to believers. But if he fails, he’ll start building his respect and reputation all over again. 

Apart from sports writing, Stan Ocampo is a Digital Marketer for a digital ad agency based in LA. Outside work, he spends his weekends on golf courses and ranges with her daughter. Stan is also a Newspaper Columnist, where he writes about pro golfers' profiles, golf course features, and golf equipment reviews.

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