Charlotte Hornets rookie guard LaMelo Ball, 19, became the youngest player ever to record a triple-double in an NBA game after he dominated the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday. Ball, who was taken at No. 3 by the Hornets in this past NBA draft, scored 22 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and dished out 11 assists in a 113-105 win over the Hawks.
After the game, Hornets head coach James Borrego raved about Ball and his abilities. "A 19-year-old rookie does not look like this,'' Hornets coach Borrego said after the game, per the Associated Press and ESPN.
"This is rare what you're seeing." A game earlier, Ball fell just short of becoming the youngest player ever with a triple-double. In a 118-110 win over the New Orleans Pelicans, Ball posted 12 points, 10 rebounds and 9 assists.
"I live my life and I know what I'm capable of, so stuff like this doesn't move me like that," Ball said. "I know that's supposed to happen."
Trae Young praises Ball
Hawks star Young gave credit to Ball after the young Hornets rookie made history on Saturday night.
"He's a tall PG who can pass, can rebound and he's a smart player,'' said Atlanta's Trae Young. "Things are going to become even easier for him in this league as he plays more and more games."
The previous record for the youngest player ever with a triple-double was held by Orlando Magic guard Markelle Fultz. Ball was 177 days younger than Fultz when he posted the triple-double. Hornets head coach Borrego insisted Ball isn't afraid of the moment though he is a very young player.
"He's not rattled by the moment. It's like he's been doing this for a number of years," Borrego said of Ball, who played overseas before becoming the third pick in the NBA draft. P.J. Washington was one of the players that benefited from Ball's passes against the Hawks.
Washington stepped up and delivered for the Hornets as he scored 22 points in a win over the Hawks. "It's tough because you don't know when it's coming. He might throw it behind his head, behind his back or straight to you," Washington joked.
"You have to be active and aware when he has the ball. It's always fun playing with a guy like that." The Hornets will be aiming to extend their three-game winning streak when they host the New York Knicks.