Skip to main content

Luka Doncic vs. LaMelo Ball — head to head rookie season comparison


As one of the future faces of the league and player that was leading in the ROTY race before the injury, LaMelo Ball put the spotlight on himself and drew attention from basketball fans all over the world. LaMelo already broke some of the NBA records, and as a skilled and elite passer, he is being compared to another elite passer and 2019 ROTY - Luka Doncic.

Although Lamelo Ball missed 21 games because of his wrist injury, he broke several NBA and franchise records. At the age of 19 years and 140 days, he became the youngest player to record a triple-double, breaking Markelle Fultz's record.

Youngest to record a Triple-Double

Luka Doncic is third on the list as he recorded his first triple-double at the age of 19 years and 327 days, and he is the first teenager to record a 30 point triple-double.

Luka's domination as a rookie is also seen in numbers. Doncic and Oscar Robertson are the only rookies in NBA history that averaged at least 21 points, 6 assists, and 7.5 rebounds. And did we mention that rookie Luka edged out rookie LeBron in every statistical category? 

LaMelo managed to record some amazing achievements even though he's currently averaging 3.5 minutes less than Luka during his rookie year.

Besides being the youngest ever to record a triple-double, LaMelo is the second-youngest player to have 7 or more threes in a single game. In a game where he dropped 7 threes, LaMelo also added ten assists, which puts him in the elite company of Steph Curry and Jason Kidd as the only rookies with 7 threes and 10 or more assists. 

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

What do the numbers say?

This being said, let's see Luka's and LaMelo's rookie season in numbers. Luka Doncic played 72 games in his first season and started all of them. He played 32.2 minutes per game while averaging 21.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 6.0 assists — he was shooting 42.7% from the field and 32.7% from three. 

LaMelo Ball played 43 games for the Hornets so far and started in 23. LaMelo is playing 28,7 minutes per game while averaging 15.7 points, 5.9 rebounds, 6.2 assists while shooting 45% from the field, and 37.5% from the three. Also, LaMelo is taking fewer shots than Luka.

In terms of defense, both Luka and LaMelo are not elite, although Luka improved over three seasons in the NBA. Both players have space for defensive improvements. Basic statistics say that Luka averaged 1.1 steal and 0.3 blocks, while LaMelo is averaging 1.6 steals and 0.4 blocks per game. 

Who makes more mistakes?

If we look just at turnovers as the criteria, LaMelo stands slightly better than Luka in his first year in the league. LaMelo has 2.9 turnovers per game, while Luka averaged 3.4.

Let's sum this up and see how does this looks head to head. Luka averaged more minutes, points, rebounds, and had fewer fouls, while LaMelo has a better fg%, 3pt %, averages more assists, more steals, blocks, and has fewer turnovers. 

What about LaMelo's and Luka's rookie highs? 

Both players have very similar highs in their rookie year. Luka's rookie high is 35 points, while LaMelo is on 34 for now. Luka also had more rebounds in a single game than LaMelo, but both players have the exact same numbers in assists, steals, blocks, and three-pointers. 

Comparing someone with Luka Doncic is quite challenging because Luka is one of the big things in the basketball world, but LaMelo definitely has his case in this debate. His elite passing abilities and talent are something that all basketball fans should be looking forward to seeing in the years to come — LaMelo needs to keep ballin' the way he does; he has a bright future in front of him.


Bill Russell once explained how he would defend Shaq: "He has to carry that weight up and down!"

A duel between the most dominant big man ever and the best defensive player in history would be a true showdown.

Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant

Most epic on-court trash talk moments caught on camera

Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James all dropped epic lines to hush their foes.

Houston Rockets point guard Aaron Brooks

One-hit wonder — whatever happened to Houston Rockets’ Aaron Brooks?

Aaron Brooks played like an All-Star player in 2009-2010 season. However, his performances dipped due to injuries and alleged attitude problems.

Indiana Pacers legend Reggie Miller, Utah Jazz guard John Stockton, Scottie Pippen forward Chicago Bulls

Reggie Miller on why Scottie Pippen was the X-Factor in the Bulls' NBA Finals wins against the Jazz

Scottie Pippen has literally contained the best point guards in NBA history.

San Antonio Spurs center Tim Duncan, center David Robinson and center Kevin Willis

”We might not want to grab him” - Kevin Willis says Tim Duncan and David Robinson hesitated to throw him into a pool when he first arrived in San Antonio

Former San Antonio Spurs center Kevin Willis recalled his hilarious and epic first meeting with Tim Duncan and David Robinson.

Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan

“There are many days I don't want to be around people and I'm a nasty person” — Michael Jordan opens up about why he doesn’t like showing himself to the public

Throughout his playing days, Michael Jordan hinted why he prefers to stay away from the public spotlight, and true enough, he carries that persona in retirement.


Ben Simmons gets heated after a fan roasts him to his face: "Hey Russell Westbrook! Can't shoot bro?"

The comedian known for clowning NBA players went up to Simmons at the mall, but the Nets star was not having it.