Second-year phenom LaMelo Ball will be joining fellow Hornets Mason Plumlee and Jalen McDaniels with the Greenboro Swarm for conditioning and rehab after Ball cleared NBA health and safety protocols, per The Charlotte Observer.
Plumlee and McDaniels are expected to join the Hornets in San Antonio Wednesday for the second game of a six-game road trip.
Charlotte lost the first game to Dallas last night, 120-96.
“We talked in the locker room. We said it’s a bad start to the road trip, but we don’t want this to define our road trip,” said guard Terry Rozier after the game. “So look for us to pick it up even in the first quarter next game.”
The Hornets hope to get Ball back ASAP, but there is no word on if he will be available for Wednesday’s game.
“He’s significant for us because he creates a lot of the easy points,’‘ said coach James Borrego, per The Charlotte Observer. “The transition points, the easy stuff around the bucket or the rim, he generates those types of shots for us, just on his own, in transition or in the halfcourt. But there are other guys here that are capable of doing that. We need those guys. Until Melo is back and he’s fully healthy, other people have to step up to create for us.”
Charlotte is 2-5 since Ball was pulled from the lineup and sit in the eighth spot in the east at 15-14.
“I just think that we have to slow down, and lock in and really just follow the game plan,” said Kelly Oubre. “We have a lot of young guys who are still getting reps in, and still growing and learning in this league. So it’s kind of hard.”
COVID has played havoc with team rosters in recent weeks.
Chicago went down ten players, and the league announced it was postponing the Bulls’ next two games.
Tuesday, four Brooklyn Nets entered health and safety protocols, and the Los Angeles Lakers canceled practice after guard Talen Horton-Tucker entered health and safety protocols.
The NBA also announced LA’s matchup against the Bulls scheduled for Sunday would be pushed back several hours.