Watching the NBA Draft in most years, two things would normally happen.
First, I usually decry whoever my New York Knicks draft. Lastly, I would laugh at Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan’s ineptitude as he would screw up his team’s draft.
Not so during last night’s 2020 NBA Draft.
Not only did my Knicks land a great pick with value with Obi Toppin (who was projected to go higher), but Jordan actually made a sensible draft pick. LaMelo Ball was rated as the top player and this draft, and it was shocking to see him fall out of the top spot — let alone to the third spot.
LaMelo’s presence and playmaking ability should help Charlotte immensely.
I mean sure, they have nice players. Devonte Graham had a breakout season, averaging 18.2 points and 7.5 assists per game which led the team. Terry Rozier averaged 18.0 points per game. Miles Bridges and PJ Washington played well. Cody Zeller was solid. But they were devoid of stars.
LaMelo gives Jordan the star power that his Hornets sorely needed.
He averaged 17.0 points, 7.6 rebounds, and 6.8 assists as a shooting guard in Australia’s National Basketball League. For those who don’t know, the NBL is a very physical league and is respected around the world.
Plus, he’s a member of the (infamous) Ball family. That alone will be a big draw at the gate for Jordan’s Hornets.
Speaking of the Ball family, this is going to be hard for me, but it’s time for me to give credit where credit is due. LaVar (and Tina) Ball did a helluva job in raising his sons.
I wasn’t particularly fond on how he went about it. His bloviating on how great Lonzo will be: better than Steph Curry (REALLY?). How he could take Jordan 1-on-1 in both of their primes. I once called him the “black Marv Marinovich”, but it’s hard to argue with the results.
It takes a lot to nurture those young men into what they are today. To have TWO sons go in the top three in the NBA Draft (and another in the G-League)? That’s amazing.
Hey, if we give credit to Archie and Olivia Manning for the success of Peyton and Eli Manning (both being top picks in their respective drafts), then we gotta give the Ball parents their props.
In the meantime, I want to see that long-awaited 1-on-1 match between Jordan and LaVar quick, fast and in a hurry. Please, and thank you.