Charlotte Hornets point guard LaMelo Ball is a very entertaining player to watch and is capable of being a mainstay on highlight reels everywhere. But is the third-overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft a Top-10 point guard this season?
The season is still relatively young, and there is a lot of basketball left to play, but Ball has managed to sneak into the back end of Ranking the 10 best point guards of the 2023–24 NBA season appearing on Hoops Habit. Ball's conversion rates (field goal, true shooting, and three-point range) were noted as reasons for why he slides into the tenth spot on this list.
"LaMelo is enjoying a career year when looking at his field goal percentage (44.3 percent) and true shooting percentage (56.8 percent), and he is shooting 38.8 percent from deep, getting his two-point percentage up above 50 percent (currently 48.8 percent) would be a welcome development, but there's no certainty that will happen this season."- Zach Ciavolella on LaMelo Ball
Ball's career highs in the shooting department are very encouraging the continued struggles on the defensive end of the floor are mentioned as an issue for Ball, in addition to the rest of his Hornets teammates. Charlotte has very few players who are not complete defensive liabilities, a group that Ball is not a member of at this moment in time.
Taking both Ball's career-best shooting percentages and his notable defensive issues into account, coming in as the 10th-best point guard in the NBA this season seems appropriate. Ball should be able to make his way up this list as his career progresses, but for now, being on the tail-end of this list is fitting.
Currently, Ball is sidelined with an ankle sprain, and the expectation is that the injury will keep him out of action for multiple weeks. The Hornets are a team that was struggling to win games consistently with Ball in the lineup (5-10), and those struggles have increased without him (1-3). Charlotte should see their winning frequency increase upon his return to the lineup, but not enough to compete for anything of consequence this season.