Trailing by more than 20 points early in the second half, the Charlotte Hornets season opener looked like it was going to end in disappointed.
That was of course until the run...
Led by a 12-point third quarter from LaMelo Ball, the Hornets ripped off a 26-2 run to storm back into the game and claim a memorable 123-122 win.
Ball filled the boz score, finishing with 31 points, nine rebounds, seven assists and seven 3-point makes from his nine attempts. At one stage, the Hornets fans showered the young star with MVP chants.
"Yeah definitely, I heard it," said Ball in a postgame interview . "The city turnt. I love it. We're gonna keep on trying to win."
LAMELO MVP CHANTS. Hornets on 26-2 run. 🔥🤯 pic.twitter.com/rMlbHmIa4r- House of Highlights (@HoHighlights) October 21, 2021
It was a statement opening night performance from last season's Rookie of the Year winner.
"I just go out there and hoop. That's all I go out there and do. All my life I've been a leader so I'm still trying to do that."
A pair of clutch free-throws from P.J. Washington with 4.6 seconds left gave Charlotte the lead, before Domantas Sabonis missed from close range to secure the win for the Hornets.
All the usual highlights were featured in Ball's performance.
.@MELOD1P GETS 🆙#AllFly | @HornetsOnBally pic.twitter.com/xdCdwOeRvv- Charlotte Hornets (@hornets) October 20, 2021
The long range bombs.
🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥- Bally Sports: Hornets (@HornetsOnBally) October 21, 2021
TAKE OVER @MELOD1P! #AllFly | @hornets pic.twitter.com/ynCqOUGiwB
HERE. COME. THE. HORNETS.@MELOD1P ↗️ Miles Plumlee#AllFly | @hornets pic.twitter.com/qZbiKT5kge- Bally Sports: Hornets (@HornetsOnBally) October 21, 2021
Alongside Ball, the Hornets received big contributions from Gordon Hayward with 27 points and Ish Smith with 14 points and five assists off the bench.
The Hornets now hit the road to face Cleveland after one night off but if opening night is anything to go by, the Hornets will again be must watch in 2021-22.