LaMelo Ball Lands in Orlando in Blockbuster Trade Proposal

The Orlando Magic have been sent home for the summer, but not before announcing themselves as being just one step away from true contender status in the Eastern Conference. They lost a hard-fought 7-game series to the Cleveland Cavaliers. And that one more step for them to take should include adding a dynamic playmaker, and shot-maker. Someone, say, like LaMelo Ball?

Now, that's not to say that Ball, signed by the Charlotte Hornets to a long-term max contract extension that only kicks in next season, would be available by trade... But let's say they get an offer that they can't refuse? 

Dan Favale of Bleacher Report has proposed a blockbuster deal that just might be able to get the Hornets thinking, if they're looking to shed money and start over:

Magic Receive:

  • LaMelo Ball

Hornets Receive:
  • Anthony Black, 2023 First-Rouder (No. 18 overall)
  • 2025 First-Rounder
  • 2026 First-Round pick swap
  • 2027 First-Rounder

In this scenario, the Magic would get a backcourt superstar to pair with frontcourt beast Paolo Banchero, while offering the shooting and playmaking to take the pressure off the 2023 Rookie of the Year. This team might be unstoppable with that tandem.

All of the above, of course, would only be viable if Ball can put his history of troublesome ankle injuries in the past. And this, plus his $204 million contract about to kick in, are the reasons stated by Favale as to why the Hornets would consider moving on from Ball. 

That haul of first-rounder, which is enhanced by Black, who was selected with the 6th overall pick only last season, would go a long way to building a young team around Brandon Miller, Charlotte's supreme rookie who was the No. 2 overall pick last year. 

Ball averaged 23.9 points, 5.1 rebounds and 8.0 assists this season, though only managed to play in 22 games. 

This move, were it to ever come to fruition, and if Ball could stay healthy, would be landscape-changing in the Eastern Conference.

Photo: © Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports