ESPN ranks LaMelo Ball No. 3 on best NBA players under 25 years old

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Jacob Rude
·1 min read
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

On Tuesday, ESPN released its annual rankings of the top 25 players under 25 years old and featured LaMelo Ball high up on the list. After a standout rookie season, Ball came in ranked third overall. Only Luka Doncic in first and Zion Williamson in second ranked above him on the list.

The trio of Kevin Pelton, Bobby Marks and DraftExpress’ Mike Schmitz were the voters in the rankings. Marks ranked Ball eighth with Doncic, Williamson, Michael Porter, Jr., Ben Simmons, Devin Booker, Donovan Mitchell and De’Aaron Fox, in that order, ranked above him.

Pelton ranked Doncic, Williamson and Jayson Tatum above Ball and Schmitz’s top three rankings mirrored that of the final list.

Given Ball’s relative lack of sample size, ranking him above the proven likes of Donovan Mitchell (fourth), Jayson Tatum (fifth), De’Aaron Fox (sixth), Ben Simmons (seventh), Devin Booker (eighth) and Bam Adebayo (ninth) seems like a bit of an overreaction to the moment.

On First Take on Tuesday morning, Stephen A. Smith agreed and voice his disagreement as only he can.

Ball’s spot in the rankings was likely done to draw attention and clicks. That it was used as a debate topic on its morning show pretty much solifies that.