LaMelo Ball's first year in the NBA was definitely an exciting one, and he brought hope that the Charlotte Hornets will be competitive sooner rather than later. The Rookie of the Year definitely had some amazing flashes, but it remains to be seen whether LaMelo Ball can become that superstar that many expect him to be as a top-3 pick in his draft class.
It seems as though Charlotte Hornets head coach James Borrego isn't at all worried about LaMelo Ball being able to improve. An article by Steve Reed of the Associated Press features James Borrego stating that he expects a "big year" and "another step" from LaMelo Ball. Borrego also mentions that for the Charlotte Hornets to become competitive, Ball "must run this team, not only on the offensive end but the defensive end".
I want him to take the reins of this program. He’s the quarterback, the floor general and for us to take that next step he must run this team, not only on the offensive end but the defensive end as well.
A lot of his success last year was based on instinct and feel. Now his next step is managing who we are, his personnel around him and understanding the league in general. So our conversation as been around our team, our strengths, our values and understanding his teammates.
He is fully engaged and I love that about him. I expect a big year from him, and I expect him to take another step.”
LaMelo Ball had a great season, but there are definitely some improvements he could make on both ends of the floor. Many players make a giant leap from their rookie to their sophomore year, and perhaps LaMelo Ball will be one of them. LaMelo Ball doesn't lack confidence in his abilities at all, which bodes well for his future. He has previously called himself the best passer in the league, putting himself over Nikola Jokic and LeBron James. While most will disagree with his opinion there, that belief in himself is crucial to playing well on the court.
The Charlotte Hornets made the play-in tournament this season but ended up losing to the Indiana Pacers. Hopefully, they are able to make the playoffs. James Borrego thinks that Ball needs to improve for the Hornets to "take the next step": we'll see whether that happens next season.