NBA Rookies Showing Out to start the Season

LaMelo Ball starting off his Rookie year on Fire


Photo Courtesy of Zack Samberg

Anshul Sreenivas

The start to the 2021 NBA season has been a bit abnormal. Players missing games due to health and safety protocols, some players not being able to play back to backs, and even some teams missing a whole week’s worth of games, all due to the coronavirus. But there are some good sparks in this season.

 LaMelo Ball, the rookie who was drafted 3rd overall back in November of 2020, by the Charlotte Hornets, has been lights out to start the journey of his basketball career. So far he’s been averaging 15.8 ppg, 6.0 reb, and 6.3 ast, doing all this while shooting 37.8% from distance and 44.9% from the field. Even better, he’s been averaging near 20 points per game in his last ten. Ball has had a much more remarkable start to his rookie year than his brother. 

Lonzo Ball, LaMelo’s older brother, was drafted back in 2017 as the second overall pick. His rookie season is probably a season he would like to forget. Shooting only 40% from the free throw line, 30% from distance, and 36% from the field, Lonzo Ball surely wasn’t a top young star which people expected him to be. Even though Lonzo has started to turn things around as he’s been playing the best basketball of his career as of late, LaMelo Ball is arguably still the overall better player of the two. 

Due to Lonzo’s slow start to his career, people expected LaMelo to turn out just like that or maybe even worse, since he was coming into the NBA slower, less athletic, a worse shooter and a worse defender than his brother. But LaMelo is leading all rookies to win rookie of the year this season.

 LaMelo truly has the potential to be one of the best point guards this league has ever seen. His passing and basketball IQ is off the charts. Only at 19 years of age, Melo is one of the best passing guards in the NBA as of today. His court vision and IQ makes him seem like a veteran guard who has been in the league for many years. Also having the fact that Melo is a point guard who stands at 6’7, which is remarkably tall for a point guard, Melo can be a lockdown defender as the years go on since he towers over most of the guards in the league.

 Most rookies come into the league shy and a bit anxious as it shows in they’re games, but Melo came out with a sense of urgency. He has the mentality where he knows he can take over a game at any given time, and can make a huge impact in the long run. Ball’s confidence has led him to much success so far in his career, as he is one of the main reasons his team is sitting at the number 6 spot in the eastern conference. LaMelo Ball has much more gas left in his tank and will be a problem going forward in his career.