Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball has been crowned this season's Rookie of the Year.
Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards and Sacramento Kings guard Tyrese Haliburton were the two other finalists for the award.
MORE: LaMelo's Rookie of the Year moments
The 2020-21 #KiaROY is… LaMelo Ball! #NBAAwards #ThatsGame pic.twitter.com/TZc3xxcAGm- NBA (@NBA) June 16, 2021
The Hornets selected Ball with the No. 3 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. He appeared in 51 games this season, 31 of which he started in, averaging 15.7 points, 6.1 assists, 5.9 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game on .436/.352/.758 shooting splits.
It took only 10 games for Ball to post his first career triple-double, finishing with 22 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in a win over the Atlanta Hawks on Jan. 9. He became the youngest player in NBA history to record a triple-double in the process.
LaMelo Ball comes off the bench to tally his first career triple-double! #AllFly @MELOD1P: 22 PTS, 12 REB, 11 AST pic.twitter.com/IHwfedr9G4- NBA (@NBA) January 10, 2021
Less than a month later (Feb. 5), Ball scored a season-high 34 points in a loss to the Utah Jazz. He then scored 24 points on 7-for-12 shooting from 3-point range in a win over the Houston Rockets on Feb. 8, making him the youngest player in NBA history at the time with seven made 3-pointers in a game.
19-year-old LaMelo Ball is the youngest player in NBA history with 7 threes & the youngest Hornet with 20 PTS/10 AST.- Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) February 9, 2021
24 PTS (game-high)
10 AST (game-high)
7 3PT (game-high)
in 32 MINSpic.twitter.com/HS67BAchi8
Ball missed 21 straight games with a fractured bone in his right wrist, but his play helped the Hornets finish the season with a 33-39 record. That earned them a spot in the Play-In Tournament, where they lost to the Indiana Pacers in the first round.
Numbers to know from LaMelo Ball's rookie season
- Edwards (19.3) was the only rookie to average more points than Ball (15.7) this season
- Ball led all rookies with 6.1 assists per game
- Ball led all rookie with 1.6 steals per game
- Ball ranked second among rookies with 5.9 rebounds per game, trailing only Detroit Pistons center Isaiah Stewart (6.7)
- Ball was the only rookie to record a triple-double
- Ball's seven double-doubles ranked him second amongst rookies, trailing only Stewart (8)
- Ball made 39.3 percent of his catch-and-shoot 3-point attempts and 32.1 percent of his pull-up 3-point attempts
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