Lakers’ Brandon Ingram ‘trying to do too much,’ Luke Walton says
By Bill Oram
EL SEGUNDO — Before the season began, Magic Johnson heaped the weight of the Lakers’ franchise on Brandon Ingram, promising that a breakout season awaited the second-year forward.
After Ingram struggled for a fourth straight exhibition game Sunday, Johnson had a very different kind of message for the 20-year-old Ingram.
“Magic told me last night he hasn’t seen me have fun yet,” Ingram said Monday.
A night earlier, Ingram logged just five points on 1-of-6 shooting in a 75-69 win over the Sacramento Kings at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. It recalled earlier outings in the preseason, including a 4-for-15 shooting performance in the opener.
“I feel like offensively it is not going so well,” Ingram said. “At all.”
Coach Luke Walton said Ingram is likely putting too much pressure on himself and, as a result, struggling.
“He wants to be great so bad and he’s worked so hard that he wants to show everyone how good he is,” Walton said. “I think because of that he’s had some possessions where he definitely is trying to do too much.”
Ingram was the star of the Lakers’ offseason, spending virtually every day at the team’s practice facility and the testimonials from teammates and coaches followed. Johnson challenged Ingram to take a major leap and lead the Lakers in scoring.
Instead, it has been rookie Kyle Kuzma who has been the Lakers’ show-stopper, integrating immediately while Ingram has struggled to find his way.
While Ingram has started to hear some external criticism – Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman mused on Twitter that “Kuzma is what they were hoping Brandon Ingram would be” – Walton said he is his own biggest critic.
“He’s hard on himself,” Walton said. “He holds himself to a high standard, which we like. He comes in and uses that type of stuff to motivate him.”
Ingram has two more […]