LiAngelo Ball's path to the NBA has been rocky, to say the least. After a (very) short stint at UCLA, he eventually moved to play overseas ball after getting caught shoplifting in China.
In the years since, Ball has been trying (and failing) to get on an NBA roster, with his closest attempt to date ending after the Detroit Pistons let him go in the middle of a 10-day contract.
In an interesting twist, though, Ball has re-surfaced in the basketball world, taking Summer League by storm with his recent performance.
According to Jordan Schultz, the Hornets organization has really taken a liking to the guy.
Lots of buzz around @LiAngeloBall, who’s played very well during Summer League and is vying for a G-League spot. Have spoken w/multiple members of the #Hornets’ org. They love Gelo! Has proven to a ton of doubters that he’s a legit guy and a big time worker...
Spoke w/#Hornets assistant coach Jay Triano, who said this of @LiAngeloBall: “Great kid. Love him. He was at the facility practicing everyday for two months to play in the Summer League. Shows a ton of character. He can shoot it, great feel, knack for scoring.”
There is no denying Gelo's excellence over the past few weeks. The 22-year-old has found great successes in Charlotte, averaging 10.5 points in four games so far, including 16 in his debut.
While it remains to be seen if this type of play is sustainable for LiAngelo, there is a lot of reason to be excited about what the Hornets are doing, particularly as it relates to the Ball family.
Thanks to the rise of LaMelo, the reigning Rookie of the Year, the Hornets were in a respectable position and even had the chance to compete in the play-in tourney before being eliminated by Indiana.
With guys like Gordon Hayward, Miles Bridges, and Terry Rozier there as support, the Hornets have a solid foundation with which to build a true title contender.
LiAngelo makes the second Ball-brother call Charlotte his home. Might Lonzo come later?
Whatever the case, things are looking up for North Carolina's capital.