19-year-old star LaMelo Ball was widely seen as the favorite to win this season's Rookie of the Year.
But after a mid-season injury sidelined him for weeks, his chances to win quickly dwindled, and new names took over that top spot.
Now that Ball has returned to the court, and is picking up where he left off, how does he feel about winning the award? Apparently, he's not too worried about it at all...
“Nah, not really. I ain’t really look at it as a goal,” Ball said, via Jonathan Abrams of the New York Times. “I just knew I was going to go out there, just had to be me. And if chips fall where they fall, you get the rookie of the year or you don’t. You still just got to play, though. It’s more of a team game. I’m trying to go to the playoffs, trying to go on a deep run, stuff like that.”
This is the sort of thing every team wants to hear from their rising star. To prioritize winning games over personal accolades really sends a great message and, for LaMelo, it helps to build a positive, winning culture within a franchise trying to become relevant.
Fortunately, Charlotte has done pretty well overall, holding a 33-35 record to sit 8th in the East. Love him or hate him, Ball is certainly making an enormous impact.