When the Lakers needed another inspiration, Brandon Ingram has appeared to step up to the plate.
While not being too much of a factor overall this season, Brandon Ingram is making progress.
Most notably, the rookie shined in the Lakers’ 16-point win over the Orlando Magic. Sunday night’s game was a display of how far the young core has really come.
Ingram led the bench in scoring and nearly led the team in that category. Julius Randle dropped 19 points as a starter, keeping Ingram in second.
All starters except for Nick Young were in double figures.
In order for the team to stay focused on themselves and not depend on a superstar, Brandon Ingram was going to have to step up eventually.
The former Duke phenom knows that how he plays has a direct effect on his team.
Chemistry hasn’t seemed to be the issue with this year’s Lakers — and that’s a blessing. Last season, as it was well covered, problems ranged from player to player and player to coach.
Nick Young and D’Angelo Russell had an off-the-court fued a year ago, but now are the team’s two best players.
Young’s defense has also factored into many wins this season, but Ingram is the most important.
Scoring 17 points on Orlando, Ingram is letting the rest of the league know not to sleep on him.
As it stands right now, the Lakers are now just two games behind Portland for a playoff spot. The teams still fighting for the eighth seed have no bearing on the seven other teams in the race, as the gap is widening each week.
But that’s okay — we weren’t expecting the Lakers to be elite just yet.
Should they make the playoffs, though, they’ll easily be the most dangerous team.