Biggest Hornets question revolves around huge LaMelo Ball problem

The Charlotte Hornets need LaMelo Ball healthy if they want to reach their peak.
Charlotte Hornets, LaMelo Ball, Hornets Injury Report
Charlotte Hornets, LaMelo Ball, Hornets Injury Report / David Berding/GettyImages

The Charlotte Hornets are heading into next season, hoping to build with their young core. They know they aren’t ready to push for a playoff spot, and they want to continue their rebuild the right way.

Charles Lee is coming to Charlotte and wants to instill his own basketball philosophies and culture, but he needs the team to fully buy into what he is selling.

Brandon Miller will be looking to make a Year 2 leap. Rookie big man Tidjane Salaun will hope to make an immediate impact. Mark Williams will want to bounce back from his injury.

All of those are important storylines to follow as the season goes on, but none of them are the biggest question surrounding the Hornets heading into next year.

That would be the health of LaMelo Ball.

The health of LaMelo Ball is the most important Hornets storyline

Andy Bailey of Bleacher Report wrote an article detailing the biggest question every team around the league will have to answer next season. For Charlotte, he wrote, “Can LaMelo Ball get healthy?”

He even noted that Ball isn’t the sole focus of the franchise anymore. With how well Miller played in his rookie season, they have some options in regard to who they could build around moving forward.

But obviously, the ideal path for Charlotte would be to build around both of those players. And in order for them to do that, Ball needs to stay on the court.

Ball hasn’t played more than 36 games in each of the last two seasons. In the 2022-23 season, he appeared in 36 games, and this past year, he only appeared in 22 games.

When he was healthy this past year, Ball was awesome. In his 22 appearances, Ball averaged 23.9 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 8.0 assists while shooting 43.3% from the field and 35.5% from behind the three-point line.

He has the talent to be the face of the franchise in Charlotte. But he can’t be the face of the organization if he’s sitting on the bench.

If the Hornets want to be at their very best, they need Ball on the court, healthy, and leading the way.