Hornets’ LaMelo Ball Scheduled to Practice on Thursday; Return Up in Air

When LaMelo Ball broke his wrist on an awkward landing against the Los Angeles Clippers last month, it was widely believed that the Charlotte Hornets’ number three overall pick was done for the 2020-21 NBA season.

Now, it looks like LaMelo can return to the practice court later this week.

After Charlotte finishes up their road trip with the second of their back-to-back games on Wednesday, Ball will have an opportunity to get on the practice court on Thursday and Friday.

Prior to Tuesday’s game against Milwaukee, Hornets head coach James Borrego spoke about LaMelo’s progress and possible timeline (via Rod Boone of SI.com’s Fan Nation):

“I think what will be important will be the transition from Wednesday’s game into Saturday’s game,” Borrego said. “We have a couple days there to kind of figure out where we are at. So that will be important for us. I don’t know what those two days will look like.”

The star rookie has been doing consistent individual sessions working himself up to team drills which will formulate a scheduled return to game action. If there are no setbacks, Ball could return for one or both of the games of a back-to-back set this weekend against the Detroit Pistons and Miami Heat.

LaMelo’s return may bring back some storylines surrounding the NBA’s Rookie of the Year Award. Before the injury, Melo was running away from his competition, Minnesota’s number one pick, Anthony Edwards. Ball is averaging 15.9 points per game, 6.1 assists and 5.9 rebounds.

There’s no doubt that the Hornets could use him right now. They have lost seven of their last ten games and are currently in the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference standings just above the Indiana Pacers.