Overall, Ball will become the fourth rookie in league h…

Overall, Ball will become the fourth rookie in league history to score at least 15.9 points, grab 5.9 rebounds and dish out 6.1 assists per game. The other three are Oscar Robertson, Magic Johnson, and Michael Carter-Williams in their rookie seasons, and Ball’s efficient 56.2 true-shooting percentage dwarfs Carter-Williams’ 48.0 mark. Really, Ball’s rookie season is in a class that very few other players have hit statistically, and he did so while actually leading Charlotte toward a surprise contention for a playoff berth. Beyond the numbers, Ball actually has an effect on winning — something teenage rookies very rarely do. The Hornets are right around .500, and they’re that good without a real answer at the center position — and while Ball is surrounded by seven other players on rookie-scale contracts who are in or have been in the rotation for stretches this year.
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May 16, 2021 | 8:39 pm EDT Update
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