NBA: LaMelo Ball fractures ankle, Hornets get 5th straight win
The Charlotte Hornets continued their hottest stretch of the season on Monday night, beating the visiting Detroit Pistons 117-106. Whatever joy that came from the win was short-lived, however, as the Hornets announced after the game that star guard LaMelo Ball suffered a fractured ankle during the game.
Ball appeared to turn his right ankle while dribbling during the third quarter and went to the ground. He was shortly subbed out of the game and did not return. The team announced the injury shortly after the conclusion of the game.
Ball finished the game with 18 points on 6-of-7 shooting from beyond the arc.
LaMelo Ball headed back to the locker room after awkwardly falling on this play. pic.twitter.com/wirzYaHCZN
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) February 28, 2023
Terry Rozier led the Hornets with 22 points as the team won its season-high fifth straight. Following Ball’s lead, Charlotte shot 13-for-26 from 3-point range. The Pistons were 3-for-26.
Gordon Hayward added 19 points and Kelly Oubre Jr. joined ball with 18 points for Charlotte. Mark Williams provided 15 points and 11 rebounds.
James Wiseman scored 23 points on 9-for-11 shooting from the field for the Pistons, who have lost five games in a row. Hamidou Diallo’s 23 points and Marvin Bagley III’s 21 points gave Detroit some scoring punch off the bench. Alec Burks had 17 points and Killian Hayes provided 12 points and 10 rebounds.
The Pistons tried to make it interesting by closing within 92-86 when the Hornets went more than 3 1/2 minutes without scoring to begin the fourth quarter.
Three-point plays from Hayward and Oubre in the span of 30 seconds helped get Charlotte back on track.
Williams later scored for the Hornets and Oubre’s 3-pointer at the 3:35 mark pushed the lead to 109-99.
Even though Charlotte committed 16 turnovers to just nine charged to the Pistons, the long-range shooting more than made up for those mistakes.
The Hornets finished with a 46-39 rebounding edge. Dennis Smith Jr. came off the Charlotte bench to contribute a team-high seven assists.
The Hornets led 65-46 at halftime, aided by 56.1-percent shooting from the field that included a 9-for-15 mark on threes. Ball had five of those 3-pointers. The Pistons were just 2-for-18 from beyond the arc in the half.
The Pistons were 2-0 this season against the Hornets entering the game.