It seems like Brandon Ingram is finally hitting his stride in the second half of his first year in the NBA. after posting double digits in scoring in the Lakers’ last eight games.
Despite his team going 1-7 in that stretch, Ingram has shown a lot of improvement, averaging 14.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 0.9 blocks per game. He also shot 52% from the field over that eight-game span.
On Sunday night (Monday in Manila), the lowly Lakers faced the Cleveland Cavaliers — the best team in the East. Ingram was matched up against four-time MVP LeBron James for most of the game.
Though the Lakers absorbed a 125-120 loss, Ingram produced decent numbers with 18 points (53% FG), six rebounds, an assist and a block in 40 minutes of action.
After the game, which saw D’Angelo Russell score a career-high 40 points, James praised Ingram and his playing style.
“Kid has a lot of talent,” said James. “The more and more he plays, the more and more he is going to get more comfortable out there.”
“He has the in-between game, and can handle the ball. He shot a couple long balls tonight and that worked for him too,” he added.
James also said Ingram’s level of play will improve when he gets more minutes on the floor.
“The more time you get on the floor the better and better you become.”
The Lakers rookie didn’t see a lot of minutes when the season started but his playing time slowly increased in the last few months. From averaging 28.4 minutes in January, he jumped to 30.6 in February and now 34.9 minutes in March.
Let’s see if Ingram can continue to build on the momentum that he has right now and lead the Lakers to a few more wins before their season winds up.