Report: Hornets guard LaMelo Ball named 2021 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year

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On Wednesday, the NBA is expected to announce LaMelo Ball as the winner of the 2020-21 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year award, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Ball won the award over Minnesota’s Anthony Edwards and Sacramento’s Tyrese Haliburton.

Ball is the third player in Charlotte franchise history to win the Rookie of the Year award, joining Larry Johnson in 1991-92 and Emeka Okafor in 2004-05 — when the franchise was known as the Bobcats.

This season, Ball averaged 15.7 points, 6.1 assists and 5.9 rebounds in 51 games. Ball started his final 31 games of the year, a span that also featured nearly four weeks on the sideline with a wrist injury. He became the youngest player in league history to notch a triple-double.

Even with the injury, Ball led rookies in assists while finishing third in points, sixth in rebounds and third in steals. He became the first rookie in 60 years to lead his class in points, rebounds, assists and steals at the All-Star break. Ball also earned Rookie of the Month honors for December/January, February and March.

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