Sources: R.J. Hampton cleared to practice while LaMelo Ball remains sidelined

R.J. Hampton has been medically cleared for full contact in the Australian NBL, while LaMelo Ball remains out for the indefinite future, sources told ESPN.

Hampton, No. 7 in ESPN's top 100 draft prospects for 2020, has been cleared by doctors to resume full basketball activity after recovering from a hip injury and was a partial participant in two practices this week, sources told ESPN.

He has been sidelined since early December but will travel with the New Zealand Breakers on a road trip to play the South East Melbourne Phoenix and Cairns Taipans this weekend, and is expected to play in Melbourne. Hampton will be slowly reintegrated with a minutes restriction for the immediate future. The Breakers are 1½ games out of the playoffs with 10 games to play.

Ball, ESPN's No. 1 draft prospect for 2020, is still in a walking boot and on crutches as he has been instructed not to put any weight on his foot for at least another two weeks as he recovers from the bone bruise injury he suffered in practice in early December, sources told ESPN.

Once he has shed the walking boot, Ball will begin rehab but may have only a limited amount of time before the end of the Illawarra Hawks' regular season on Feb. 14. The Hawks are in last place, 4½ games out of the NBL playoffs, with 10 games remaining, meaning that their season may essentially be over by the time Ball is cleared for basketball activity.

Most decision-makers of NBA teams vying for top draft selections did not have an opportunity to evaluate Ball in the 16 preseason and regular-season games he played in Australia and will likely need to see him play during the pre-draft process in May and June to feel comfortable with his candidacy as a top pick.