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SB Nation Blogger Mock Draft: The Hornets select LaMelo Ball third

The Hornets land some star power in SB Nation’s mock draft.

NBA: Summer League-New York Knicks at New Orleans Pelicans Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

SB Nation’s team of NBA bloggers conducted a mock draft in preparation for the real NBA Draft that occurs next week. I represented the Charlotte Hornets in this exercise and selected guard LaMelo Ball. Here’s my explanation for the pick:

The Hornets are in talent acquisition mode, and LaMelo Ball might be the most talented prospect in this draft. Ball is positionally redundant with the Hornets’ current two best players, but his size allows him to share the floor with either Terry Rozier or Devonte’ Graham, and even both for stretches. His ability to create looks for others will open up scoring opportunities for both of the other Hornets guards, who were often overburdened on the offensive end last season. He would also bring a superstar presence to a franchise that’s always struggling to attain media relevance.

Anthony Edwards and James Wiseman were the first two players off the board. If that actually happens on draft night, Mitch Kupchak should sprint hand Adam Silver the virtual card with the pick. He’s frequently expressed that he’s looking at talent over need in this draft. Ball is arguably the most talented player in the draft, and I can’t imagine Kupchak letting him slip past three is he’s available.