Charlotte Hornets rookie LaMelo Ball made the first start of his career in Monday night’s 129-121 overtime win against the Miami Heat.
Ball, who replaced an injured Terry Rozier in the starting lineup, finished with 14 points, 5 rebounds and 7 assists in 31 minutes.
The No. 3 overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft, Ball has earned big minutes off the bench but had yet to crack a starting lineup that features Rozier, Devonte’ Graham and Gordon Hayward.
Rozier’s absence also cleared up more minutes for guard Malik Monk, who seized the opportunity with 36 points in 40 minutes in Monday’s win. His 3-pointer with 16 seconds left tied the score at 113 and sent it to overtime.
Ball, 19, entered Monday’s game averaging 12.2 points, 6.1 assists and 5.9 rebounds in 25 minutes per game.