Checking in on LaMelo Ball and RJ Hampton

    Two of the top prospects in the 2020 NBA Draft are overseas


    LaMelo Ball is used to the spotlight. His infamous father, LaVar, graced our television screens what feels like forever ago and willed his sons basketball stardom into existence.

    Lonzo Ball, the eldest, had a rocky start to his NBA career after a noisy year at UCLA. He arrived in Los Angeles as the second overall pick in the draft, but was hurt often. However, now he is New Orleans and part of a young core that might be the best in the league.

    LiAngelo Ball fizzled out of college after getting into some trouble overseas.

    Meanwhile LaMelo and his stardom feels relatively under the radar in comparison to his predecessors. So on this week’s Good ‘N Plenty Jeff Goodman chatted with The Athletic’s Dana O’Neil to check in on one of the top prospects in the NBL.

    “There is so much talent and so much ability there,” said O’Neil. “And he does do things that are breathtaking at some points, but there is still that essence of flash.”

    “He’s surrounded by a bunch of nothing, and I don’t know how much coaching he’s getting. He’s just going out there and doing his thing,” she added.

    Moreover, the big news is LaVar is not around, which allows him to stay focused.

    LaMelo Not the Only One Showing Off Overseas

    RJ Hampton, who Goodman has going in the bottom half of the lottery in this upcoming draft, is also playing in the NBL this season. So far in four games with the New Zealand Breakers Hampton is averaging 9 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 2 assists playing roughly 20 minutes per game off the bench.

    This is really an unprecedented move. His story is a little bit different than everyone else that bypassed college. He could have easily gone to a selection of top colleges, but didn’t.

    “He never dreamed of playing college basketball. He’s always dreamed of playing professional basketball,” said O’Neil.

    To hear more on RJ and LaMelo make sure you listen to the show! Subscribe to Good ‘N Plenty on iTunes and Stitcher! And make sure you follow Jeff on Twitter here!


    8:32 Scouting basketball in Australia

    18:43 LaMelo is really showing serious skills

    25:13 Favorite interview ever?

    34:04 Big questions for James Wiseman