2019-20 Pelicans Season in Review: Lonzo Ball

Lonzo Ball Pelicans Season in Review
  • Age 22
  • Experience Three seasons (one with Pelicans)
  • Games Played/Games Started 63/54

Near the top of Lonzo Ball’s checklist entering 2019-20 were items such as better health and developing a more accurate perimeter shot. Check and check. The result was a more consistent, pass-first point guard who fit snugly in one of the NBA’s fastest-paced attacks.
It didn’t happen overnight, however. Ball initially seemed less than 100 percent physically and ended up being sidelined by injury for eight of New Orleans’ first 19 games. In October and November, he shot just 34 percent from three-point range, but Dec. 1 seemed to mark a turning point for the California native. From there, Ball appeared in 52 straight games, after he’d missed a total of 65 games in his two previous seasons with the Lakers. He shot so well from beyond the arc that he finished at a career-high 37.5 percent on three-pointers, despite tailing off in the Orlando bubble.

    Lonzo Ball Per-Game Stats from 2019-20 NBA Season

  • Minutes 32.1
  • Field Goal % 40.3
  • Three Point % 37.5
  • Free Throw % 56.6
  • Points 11.8
  • Rebounds 6.1
  • Assists 7
  • Steals 1.4
  • Blocks 0.6

“Overall, I think it was a positive experience,” Ball summarized Aug. 10 of his season. “I’m definitely looking forward to next year. It started off pretty slow, but I think I got into a groove and showed the player I can be before the (season) stopped. Unfortunately the bubble didn’t go the way we wanted it to, but we’ll be ready to bounce back next year. We made a lot of growth.”

Lonzo Ball | By The Numbers

  • 3

    Games in which Ball connected on exactly seven three-pointers, including doing so on back-to-back nights, March 3-4. In two seasons with Los Angeles, his best game beyond the arc was six made treys as a rookie on March 3, 2018, at San Antonio.

  • 21-13

    New Orleans win-loss record from when Ball permanently became a starter Dec. 23 until a pandemic shut down the NBA in mid-March. “We showed that when we’re a healthy team, we can play with anybody,” he said. “We have a lot of young talent. Hopefully guys will come back (next season) and we can start it up again.”

  • 13.2

    Percentage of Ball’s field-goal attempts that took place from between three and 16 feet from the basket, a shooting area he’ll focus on this offseason. “Definitely work on in-between game and finishing at the rim,” he said of two upcoming projects. By comparison, Jrue Holiday took 28.4 percent of his shots from that 3-16 foot range; Brandon Ingram’s share was 29.5 percent.

Lonzo Ball | Most Notable Games from 2019-20 NBA Season

  • #1, Dec 29, New Orleans 127, Houston 112

    Although Ball got healthy Dec. 1 and became a fixture in the starting lineup Dec. 23, this game seemed to launch his sustained stretch of improved performance. His triple-double consisted of 27 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, featuring 7/12 three-point shooting. The victory extended the Pelicans’ season-high win streak to four.

  • #2, Jan. 4, New Orleans 117, Sacramento 115

    His second game of 20-plus points and 10-plus assists included 24 and 10 in those categories, helping lift the Pelicans to a dramatic and needed win at Golden 1 Center. He also grabbed six rebounds and two steals. Ball threw an inbound pass to JJ Redick with 4.2 seconds left, which Redick converted into a left-handed, banked-in runner at :01.1.

  • #3, Jan. 26, New Orleans 123, Boston 108

    It’s probably no coincidence that Ball delivered double-digit assists in virtually all of NOLA’s best wins of the season, including 15 dimes against the Celtics, statistically his best passing game in ’19-20. Ball also posted 10-plus assists in triumphs over Utah and Portland. After Jan. 1, he had at least five dimes in all but three games he played.

Lonzo Ball Gallery

Photos: Lonzo Ball Season in Review | 2019-2020 Pelicans