LaMelo Ball showing Panthers that a star is everything

(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) LaMelo Ball
(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images) LaMelo Ball /
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Carolina Panthers
(Mary Holt-USA TODAY Sports) LaMelo Ball /

More national exposure for the Carolina Panthers

Check Bleacher Report or ESPN’s social media accounts on any night the Charlotte Hornets are playing and it’s almost a lock you’ll see a LaMelo Ball highlight.

Add that to the almost weekly national television debate show coverage of Ball and you’ve got a recipe that is great for the Charlotte-area and its basketball team. The rookie’s stellar play has even been mentioned on the legendary sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live, with a parody of his boisterous father, Lavar Ball.

It doesn’t get much bigger than that.

The Carolina Panthers could definitely afford more exposure on national airwaves. Last season they only played two games in primetime, which were Week 8 at home to the Atlanta Falcons and Week 15 at the Green Bay Packers.

Adding Deshaun Watson to a competitive roster would certainly increase that number. In 2019, the eventual playoff-bound Houston Texans were given three nationally televised games and even benefitted from the international spotlight with a game in London.

That level of relevancy is what David Tepper has to be aiming for. Especially with the billionaire’s background as a minority owner for the second biggest brand in the NFL, the Pittsburgh Steelers.

It may be a while until we know who’s going to be behind center this August. But the team has made it clear they’re aiming for the big prize this offseason. And with a rising star growing on the Hornets in LaMelo Ball, the Panthers are trying to do all that they can to not become the second option in their own city.

If they can pull it off one thing is for sure, Charlotte will be one of the most fun sports cities in the country for years to come.