Hornets rookie LaMelo Ball gets first career start

LaMelo Ball

Charlotte Hornets rookie LaMelo Ball will get his first NBA start Monday in a road game against the Miami Heat.

The 19-year-old, who was the third overall draft pick in the most recent draft, is getting the opportunity with Terry Rozier out because of a sprained right ankle.

It has been an up-and-down start to his NBA career for Ball, whose older brother Lonzo plays for the New Orleans Pelicans. LaMelo Ball, a 6-foot-6 guard, has averaged 12.2 points per game with 5.9 rebounds and 6.1 assists.

He will enter Monday’s game off a career-best 27 points Saturday in the Hornets’ 126-114 home victory over the Milwaukee Bucks.

His previous best was 22 points, done twice, but since the second time he hit that number he had five games in single digits, including a four-point game Jan. 13 against the Dallas Mavericks when he shot 2-for-8 from the field and 0-for-4 from 3-point range.

LaMelo Ball has averaged 11.7 points in 10 road games this season and 12.6 points in 10 home games for the Hornets (9-11).

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