NBA Scout Predicts LaMelo Ball to Be Best PG from 2020 NBA Draft Class

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJune 16, 2020

FILE - In this Nov. 17, 2019, file photo, LaMelo Ball of the Illawarra Hawks carries the ball up during their game against the Sydney Kings in the Australian Basketball League in Sydney.  LaMelo Ball's bone bruise on his left foot is expected to keep him out of the Illawarra Hawks lineup for the remainder of the National Basketball League season in Australia. The 18-year-old American, who joined Illawarra as part of the NBL's Next Stars program, is expected to be a first-round pick in this year's NBA draft.(AP Photo/Rick Rycroft, File)
Rick Rycroft/Associated Press

LaMelo Ball will almost certainly be the top point guard off the board in the 2020 NBA draft, and his short stint in Australia convinced at least one scout he's clearly the best in this class. 

"I think he'll be the best of the group," a scout told James L. Edwards III of The Athletic. "His size, vision, feel and instincts just add up to him being a pretty good player. Obviously, people have concerns about his shooting, but I think it'll come around. I think he'll be fine. I think he loves the game. He was pretty impressive down in Australia."

ESPN's Jonathan Givony ranks Ball as the second-best player in the 2020 class, behind only Georgia's Anthony Edwards. This is widely viewed as one of the worst draft classes in recent memory, featuring no surefire All-Stars.

Ball flashed a solid all-around game in his 12 NBL appearances, averaging 17.0 points, 7.6 rebounds and 6.8 assists. But he knocked down just 37.5 percent of his shots overall and 25.0 percent of his threes.

Notably, his older brother, Lonzo Ball, initially struggled to find his shooting rhythm in the pros, though he's turned it around this season.

Video Play Button
Videos you might like

LaMelo's top competition among point guards is likely Iowa State's Tyrese Haliburton, who may be more of a combo guard than primary ball-handler in the NBA. French point guard Killian Hayes has flashed potential but has some of the same athletic and turnover concerns as Ball without the same upside.

Barring something unforeseen, LaMelo will be the first point guard off the board and should develop into at least a serviceable starter. In this class, that should be enough to lock him into the top spot.