Now in his second season, Brandon Ingram says he’d like to be the closer for the L.A. Lakers. The main obstacles to that happening are strength and confidence.
It’s too early to judge a lot but overall his stats are certainly better:
Through six games his minutes are up, his field percentage has gone from .402 to .429, his three point shooting from .294 to .308, his free throw percentage has moved from .621 to .692. His rebounding is slightly down (from 4.0 to 3.7) but assist, blocks and steals are all up. His scoring has moved from 9.5 to 14.7 ppg.
Rebounding is one way to get an idea of how someone has gotten stronger but in this case it’s not as important: despite all the criticisms, Lonzo Ball isn’t that far from averaging a triple double (10 points, 7.7 assists and 7.5 rebounds a night) and actually leads the Lakers in rebounding. Larry Nance, Jr. is close behind at 7.2, Brook Lopez is grabbing 5.3 while Julius Randle is getting 5.0, Kyle Kuzma 4.8 and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 4.5.
The Lakers are 10th in the league in rebounding which isn’t bad but obviously everyone wants to get better. Still, there are enough good rebounders on the team to let Ingram advance as he gets stronger. And his overall improvement is considerable.