2018 Player Capsule: Brandon Ingram
Younger than most rookies, Brandon Ingram put together a sopohomore season befitting a second-overall pick, finishing in a three-way tie for the team’s leading scorer (with Julius Randle and Kyle Kuzma).
Ingram averaged 16.1 points a night (about seven more than last season) and nearly doubled his assist production to 3.9 per game. Both of these jumps stemmed largely from the development of his slashing ability, as he drove to the basket almost twice as often as the next-closest Laker.
Brandon Ingram has done a great job finishing through contact tonight.— Joey Ramirez (@JoeyARamirez) February 3, 2018
Four and-1s to go along with 16 pts and 9 ast through three quarters. pic.twitter.com/kfSGqicHb2
While Ingram’s herky-jerky drives and odd-angle finishes were the keys to unlocking his development as a scorer, he also sported refined shooting mechanics, and hit a team-best 41.5 percent on spot-up attempts.
In addition to getting his own offense, the 20-year-old made huge progress as a (primarily drive-and-kick) playmaker. He started at point guard for 10 games in February, averaging 18.6 points and 5.2 assists while ensuring that the team’s pace did not sputter in the absence of an injured Lonzo Ball.
He also improved on the defensive end, using his 7-foot-3 wingspan to contest the NBA’s sixth-most 3-point attempts per game (4.2), while opponents shot 3.5 percent below their season average when defended by him.
One of Brandon Ingram's best defensive halves of the season. Contested a ton of shots.— Joey Ramirez (@JoeyARamirez) February 24, 2018
Watch him fight past two screens to get a piece of this one. Then pushes ahead in transition and sets Randle up for the slam. pic.twitter.com/z6I5zxRvuD
By the Numbers
3: Games played after Ball returned. Ingram missed most of March and April due to a groin strain and a concussion.
32: Points scored against Golden State on Nov. 29. Ingram reached his career-high with an ideal blend of seven baskets at the rim and five off jumpers.
39.0: Percentage shot from 3-point range, a nearly 10 percent leap from last year. Ingram made 14 fewer 3’s this season, but on 82 fewer attempts.
Brandon Ingram completely shredded the Warriors on switches for six of his 11 baskets.— Joey Ramirez (@JoeyARamirez) December 1, 2017
Slower bigs stood no chance when he attacked the rack. Mixed in a pull-up, a hesi, some crazy angles.
: @JoshWilliams89 pic.twitter.com/tw3WrUSR12
This will be another huge summer for Ingram, whom President of Basketball Operations Magic Johnson called the “most versatile player we have on the team.”
Much of Ingram’s offseason development will revolve around his physical “transformation.” The front office wants Ingram, who played 59 games, to add strength to his slim frame for performance and durability purposes.
Ingram also said he plans to work on his ball handling and shooting, while Johnson expressed that he needs to be more of a vocal leader, particularly late in games.