Los Angeles Lakers: Brandon Ingram’s 2017-2018 overall grade

NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 14: Brandon Ingram
NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 14: Brandon Ingram /
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Los Angeles Lakers: Brandon Ingram's 2017-2018 overall grade
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Brandon Ingram had quite a breakout year in 2017-2018 and the sky is the limit for the small forward of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Headed into the 2017-2018 campaign, Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram had the weight of the world on his shoulders. Ingram was expected to get better in 2017-2018, and, boy, did he deliver.

In his rookie season, B.I. struggled mightily until the later parts of the year. Sometimes even when he just released a shot, it was easy at times to sense slivers of hesitancy. Ingram clearly lacked total confidence in himself.

While the talent was there without a doubt, the beast never quite unleashed itself. At best, Ingram’s rookie year can perhaps be best characterized as one that was filled with streakiness. It caused many to wonder if he belonged in the NBA.

However, that line of thought changed in a big way in his sophomore year in the NBA. Going into the preseason, Ingram appeared to be a tad stronger than was the case in year one.

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His numbers are certainly indicative of the hard work he put in behind the scenes. In his 2017-2018 campaign, the Duke product averaged 16.1 points, 5.3 rebounds, and nearly four assists a game.

The 16.1 points are critical to note because this is the type of production many expected last season. This demonstrates a differential of well over six points, which is extremely encouraging.

Granted Ingram did not fully live up to Magic Johnson’s lofty preseason standards (and his own better yet), B.I. pieced together a fine year. He needed to elevate his game, and, indubitably, the 20-year-old did just that.

A lot of it started with a shift in his mentality. Via CBS Sports’ Reid Forgrave, Ingram said the following about this shift back in February.

"I think I’ve just put more into my game. I’ve really tried to change my mentality, my aggressiveness. I’ve really had to focus on my confidence, and my confidence has gone sky-high with the work I’ve put in this summer. I’m enjoying my teammates. My teammates are putting me in a good position to play my game, and my coaches are too. It’s been really fun."

Although the small forward’s game still has kinks in it, his increased aggressiveness was very noticeable. In particular, his aggressiveness came into play on the offensive end of the hardwood. It became a regular pattern to see this attitude from him nightly, making it one of his strong suits.

Among his strong suits, areas Ingram can get better in to go along with his season highlights are to follow. Once this is all executed, his 2017-2018 performance will be given a grade.