The Charlotte Hornets team, LaMelo Ball, is widely regarded as the leading candidate to win the NBA Rookie of the Year award, has a broken leg in his right wrist and is indefinite, the team announced Sunday night.
Ball underwent a magnetic resonance imaging exam in San Antonio on Sunday as the Hornets prepared for a road game against the Spurs on Monday. Ball, 19, landed hard on Saturday night in the first half of the team’s loss to the Los Angeles Clippers and tried to play through the pain in the second half.
Ball was drafted by the Hornets third in November, scoring 15.9 points, 5.9 rebounds, 6.1 assists and 1.59 steals per game; he ranks seventh in the league in steals per game. Combined with strong play from free agent rookie Gordon Hayward and second-year Hornet Terry Rozier – both former Boston Celtics – Ball Charlotte helped secure a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference after four consecutive off-season seasons.
Ball started in Miami on February 1 and has averaged 19.5 points, 5.8 rebounds, 6.2 assists and 1.7 steals since the move. Amid much skepticism that led to the concept of his reliability from the perimeter, Ball shot 46.4 percent off the field and started 42.6 percent of the three-point series in his 21st.
Ball was named Eastern Conference Month Newcomer of the Month in January and February, and was the only rookie in the past 60 years to lead all freshmen in overall points, rebounds, assists and stolen players at the All Star break.
Ball, the younger brother of New Orleans Pelicans keeper Lonzo Ball, was selected by the Hornets in the 2020 series, after Minnesota babysitter Anthony Edwards and Golden State selected center James Wiseman.