LaMelo Ball 'A Very Dangerous Choice' in 2020 Draft, Says NBA Scout

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistAugust 22, 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 is regarded as one of the top prospects in the 2020 NBA draft, but at least one scout has concerns about the potential risk and reward for the point guard. 

Per Marc Berman of the New York Post, an anonymous NBA scout called Ball a "very dangerous choice" in this class.

"A very high risk-reward," the scout said. "All the baggage that comes with a decision like that is not what the Knicks need. Honestly, Lonzo [Ball] was a horrific shooter. He did manage to change his shot mechanics and now is a pretty good shooter. It's very unusual but he did it and possibly LaMelo could, too."

Ball's shooting ability has been the subject of criticism on his way to the NBA draft. B/R's Jonathan Wasserman offered this scouting report while comparing the 18-year-old's game to Caris LeVert and Jason Williams:

"He reminds of former Sacramento Kings/Memphis Grizzlies point guard Jason Williams in that sense, with his showboat handles and flashy assists. 

"Ball will similarly be valued for his ability to set up teammates playing at different speeds. And like Williams, he likes to quick-trigger threes despite not being very efficient. For his career, Williams made 1.6 threes per game on 32.7 percent, numbers that reflect Ball's shot-making and inconsistent accuracy."

Based on his stats while playing professional basketball overseas, Ball has a lot of work to do as a scorer. He shot 37.5 percent overall and 25 percent from three in 12 games with the Hawks of Australia's National Basketball League. 

The scout did note Ball's brother, Lonzo Ball, did improve his shot. The New Orleans Pelicans guard connected on a career-high 37.5 percent of his three-point attempts this season. 

If LaMelo Ball is able to reach that level, his passing and floor vision will make him worth being one of the top picks in the draft.


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