LaMelo Ball third in NBA draft



LaMelo Ball playing in the Drew League during 2019.

LaMelo Ball, Illawarra Hawks (Wikipedia)

Taken third overall in the 2020 NBA Draft, LaMelo Ball was signed by the Charlotte Hornets.

A sensation since his middle school days, Ball played for the prestigious Chino Hills Varsity Basketball squad with his two older brothers and helped them secure a state championship in 2017. Since then, both brothers have found their way into the NBA, Lonzo Ball as a New Orleans’ Pelican guard, and LiAngelo as an Oklahoma City Blues’ forward of the G-League.

During LaMelo’s junior year of high school, a dispute with his coach prompted him to leave Chino Hills and play professional basketball in Lithuania. After a short stint overseas, LaMelo returned to the states and played in a league created by his father Lavar Ball, known as the Junior Basketball Association.

Ball playing for Ohio’s SPIRE Academy (Wikipedia- 2019)

After attempting to help establish the league, LaMelo returned to the high school scene for his senior year, playing for SPIRE Academy in Geneva, Ohio.

LaMelo Ball was a five-star prospect and an UCLA commit, but due to eligibility concerns, he decided to forgo college and play in Australia. Helping his Illawarra Hawks team tremendously by averaging 16.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 6.3 assists, he claimed the NBL’s Rookie of the Year award in 2019.

Even with all the drama concerning his name, LaMelo seems to have been unfazed by all of it.

“He definitely overcame the hype and was able to surpass all the criticism he was getting, and still make it to the NBA”, Wiregrass Ranch varsity basketball player Zoi Evans said.

Ball has constantly been the center of criticisms when it comes to the high school basketball scene and outside of it as well. His father Lavar Ball can be attributed to most of the drama, comparing himself to the likes of Michael Jordan.

“I think Lamelo is overhyped just like his bother was,” boys varsity basketball coach Jeremy Calzone said. “I think he will be a solid pro but nothing more.  It is a great story that all three brothers made it, but they will never live up to the hype.”

The question is, will Ball live up to the expectations placed upon him?