Hornets' LaMelo Ball Named Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for January

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistFebruary 2, 2021

Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball (2) brings the ball up court against the Milwaukee Bucks during an NBA basketball game in Charlotte, N.C., Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021. (AP Photo/Jacob Kupferman)
Jacob Kupferman/Associated Press

LaMelo Ball is living up to the hype, taking home the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month award for January:

Charlotte Hornets PR @HornetsPR

LaMelo Ball joins the following players to amass 225+ points, 115+ rebounds and 115+ assists through first 20 games of a career: Alvan Adams, LeBron James, Magic Johnson, Chris Paul, Oscar Robertson, Ben Simmons #AllFly @hornets https://t.co/1YN8ID2bMo

The No. 3 pick in the 2020 draft averaged 12.6 points, 6.7 assists and 6.2 rebounds per game in 16 appearances in January despite exclusively coming off the bench for the Charlotte Hornets

Ball's best performance came in the final game of the month, scoring 27 points with nine assists and three steals in a win over the Milwaukee Bucks. He entered the starting lineup in his team's next game.

Earlier in the month, Ball became the youngest player in NBA history to post a triple double when he tallied 22 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a win over the Atlanta Hawks.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

“I’ve been doing this ever since I was three, so it comes quite easy to me, for real.” LaMelo Ball is just getting started. https://t.co/yDv0u4rSJE

The 19-year-old has been a bit inconsistent with his shooting, making 42.3 percent of shots from the field and 30.8 percent of three-point attempts. However, he makes up for it with his ability to contribute in other ways.

He enters Tuesday ranked first among all rookies in assists per game and second in rebounds per game behind only center James Wiseman.

Tyrese Haliburton has had a similar impact for the Sacramento Kings and was named the Western Conference Rookie of the Month. The No. 12 overall draft pick has averaged 10.7 points, 5.4 assists and 1.1 steals per game in 18 appearances this season, shooting 40.9 percent from three-point range in the process.