• LaMelo Ball's return for the Hornets could make or break the team's playoff bid
  • Ball is unlikely to be in tip-top shape if he does return for the Hornets
  • The Hornets' coaching staff should be wary that Ball could aggravate his injury

The Charlotte Hornets are aware that they need all the help they can get as they make a push for the NBA playoffs.

One guy who appeared to be done for the season is rookie sensation LaMelo Ball. But it seems that the 19-year-old son of LaVar Ball could return for the Hornets, something that could be good or bad for the charges of head coach James Borrego.

According to ESPN, Ball could be back for the Hornets in just over a week. The top rookie suffered a fractured wrist in a game against the Los Angeles Clippers last March 20 and has been out of action since.

Ball has been a key part of the Hornets' run this season, averaging 15.9 points, 6.1 assists, and 5.9 rebounds in 41 games. Aside from that, he was also shooting well from the field with a 45.1% clip and 37.5% from beyond the arc.

Looking at the Hornets right now, they are at the eighth spot of the Eastern Conference with an even 28-28 slate. They are just a game behind the Miami Heat and could still move up with some help from Ball.

While a healthy Ball could give Borrego some added firepower on the floor, questions remain on the fitness level of the basketball prodigy.

If he plays with less than 100%, there could be consequences. That may include having to play through pain, a risky alternative that could carry on in the coming years.

Tied up to that is the fact that he may not be able to perform accordingly, hurting the Hornets' drive in the playoffs.

LaMelo Ball #2 of the Charlotte Hornets
LaMelo Ball likely to be out for the current NBA season for the Charlotte Hornets due to a fracture in his right wrist. Getty Images | Jacob Kupferman

Borrego is likely to use him sparingly despite the risks. The fact that the Hornets are looking to make the playoffs for the first time since 2016 gives the Michael Jordan-owned franchise reason to pull out all the stops.

The Hornets are coming off a win over the Portland Trail Blazers, 109-101. Terry Rozier led the way with 34 points, 10 assists, and eight rebounds with PJ Washington backing him up with 23 markers and eight boards.

Adding Ball at some point could help, but there is a chance that Borrego may take the cautious approach on his prized rookie.