Hornets shut down LaMelo Ball for the remainder of the season with ankle injury

Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball looks on during an NBA basketball press conference to introduce new executive vice president of basketball operations, Jeff Peterson, Wednesday, March 6, 2024, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Matt Kelley)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Charlotte Hornets are shutting down guard LaMelo Ball for the season.

Ball has not played since Jan. 27 for the Hornets (18-54), who've been eliminated from postseason competition. Charlotte has missed the playoffs in eight straight seasons, the longest drought in the NBA.

The 22-year-old Ball, who signed a five-year max contract extension in July, has had repeated problems with ankle injuries since coming into the league and has played in just 58 games over the last two seasons.

Ball had been playing well before going out, averaging a career-high 23.9 points per game this season. Ball was the NBA Rookie of the Year in 2021 and an All-Star the following season.


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