Hornets hopeful LaMelo Ball can return in coming week, but return date not set

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Jacob Rude
·2 min read
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Nearly a week after LaMelo Ball had his cast removed from his wrist that he fractured on March 20, the Hornets are hopeful he can return in the coming week. Ball has rehabbed over the last week, doing on-court work before games.

With a handful of off days in the upcoming week, the Hornets could begin reintegrating Ball into the team and could set up his potential return. Following Sunday’s win over the Celtics, head coach James Borrego spoke about Ball’s potential return, noting that the team is hopeful but not expecting anything yet.

“We’re hopeful,” he said. “He’s progressing every day. I’ll learn more about him tomorrow when we get together. He is progressing, that’s what I can say. Does that lead us to him playing this week? We’ll find out. But I don’t really have an answer there.

“I like the direction he’s moving. It’s a very positive direction. As I said, we’re just taking it a day at a time. There’s hope that he could be back in the next week but there’s no guarantee of that.”

The Hornets will have practice on Monday before a back-to-back on Tuesday and Wednesday against the Bucks and Celtics, respectively. Following those games, though, Charlotte will have consecutive off days before a home game on Saturday, setting up another likely practice date on Friday.

Consecutive wins over Cleveland and Boston in the last three days have taken some of the pressure of the Hornets playoff race. After falling down into the play-in games, the team has steadied at the eighth seed, five games above Chicago and Toronto outside of the play-in race, and 1.5 games back of moving out of the play-in tournament entirely as the sixth seed.

Ball’s return is less important for maintaining a playoff spot but depending on the date of his return, he could help the team make a push back out of the play-in games.

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