Brandon Ingram’s first trip to Las Vegas Summer League offered Los Angeles Lakers fans a preview of his rookie season to come. Ingram showed glimpses of the length, skill and potential that led the Lakers to select him with the second overall pick a year ago, but he also flashed the very real flaws that would plague him during his up-and-down debut campaign.
Inconsistency should have been expected from Ingram — he only turned 19 in September after all — but he’s focused on having a better showing in Las Vegas this year, and he wants to learn from the mistakes he does make in his voluntary workouts with the team before heading to summer league.
“I’m excited for this summer,” Ingram told Mark Medina of the Orange County Register. “To have feedback this early, having availability and having this many months (to work) on different things is exciting.”
Ingram began to come on towards the end of the season, attacking the basket relentlessly and improving his finishing skills, but he still has plenty of improvements to make. He’ll have to improve as a 3-point shooter (shot just 29.4 percent from deep as a rookie), which is something he’s reportedly already doing:
Brandon Ingram’s been spending a lot of time working on/fine-tuning his shot w/LAL’s staff. Focus on the release, really breaking it down.— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) May 22, 2017
@LakerFilmRoom Yup, the coaches are on the finer points. He made progress from Oct. to April and should make more this offseason.— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) May 22, 2017
Ingram will also have to continue growing his other skills and learning to better utilize his sheer physical advantages, and one way many (including the Lakers front office) have suggested he do so is by working out with Kobe Bryant this summer.
Ingram said he still plans to work with Kobe and revealed what he’d want to work on with him on Locked on Lakers last week, and he elaborated to Medina on what his goals are going forward after those workouts are done and his second summer league is in the books:
“In five years, you can say you want to be a superstar in this league and want to win such and such amount of championships,” Ingram said. “But I also want to continue to get better and better each and every year. Of course, you want to win more games every year. But my main goal right now is to get better and get closer toward having a winning team with the Lakers organization.”
The Lakers are still a long ways away from being a winning team after their fourth-straight trip to the lottery. However, Ingram seems to be on the right track to help them get back on a winning path. If the other Lakers are as dedicated as it sounds like Ingram is, winning basketball could return to Los Angeles sooner than most think.