There’s a buzz back in Charlotte and Hornets legend Muggsy Bogues is relishing watching his old team blossom into one of the most exciting young teams in the NBA.
The Hornets are making a solid playoff case through the first quarter of the season and one big reason why has been the play of reigning Rookie of the Year LaMelo Ball, following in Bogues’ footsteps as a highlight-filled Hornets point guard.
“LaMelo is infectious, the guys love playing with him,” Bogues told Quentin Richardson and Jamal Crawford during the NBA Hooper Vision live broadcast of the Hornets game against the Bucks on NBA League Pass.
“It’s a treat to see a guy come in with that type of humbleness and willingness to want to uplift his teammates and I think him playing overseas last year allowed him to grow to play against those type of professional players and gave him a head start coming in to blend in with these guys and it’s been very noticeable from last year to this year.”
The Hornets fell just shy of making the postseason in LaMelo’s rookie campaign, losing to the Indiana Pacers in the Play-In Tournament. As it stands the Hornets are 13-11, good for the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, with their young core of LaMelo, Miles Bridges and Kelly Oubre Jr. continuing to improve alongside veterans Gordon Hayward and Terry Rozier.
“This year everybody’s healthy everybody playing share basketball you got four guys pretty much averaging 20 points,” Bogues added.
“With the veterans and the young guys, I think it’s really been a sight to see for the city of Charlotte for sure … I think these guys enjoy playing with one another.”
Ball was nearly the hero in Milwaukee, draining a clutch triple to tie it up at 125-125 with 5.9 seconds to go before Giannis Antetokounmpo went down the other end to hit the game-winning layup.
Ball finished with career-high 36 points on the night, adding nine assists, five rebounds, three steals and a block on 12-of-22 shooting and 8-of-15 from the 3-point line.
The Hornets have picked up some impressive wins this season, beating the Washington Wizards (twice), the Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies and Portland Trail Blazers.
Following their loss against the Bucks, the Hornets face a tough stretch of games that will test the young team, as they will take on the Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers, Dallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns, Utah Jazz and Denver Nuggets over their next 10 games.