Los Angeles Lakers: 3 Best draft picks of 2010s

(Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Lakers
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2. Brandon Ingram, SF, Duke, 2016 Draft

A very close second in a tight race between former 2nd overall picks. Brandon Ingram came to the Lakers as a rail-thin teenager who was considered to be a long-term investment. Given his lack of physical tools coming into the NBA, Ingram was projected as a long-term project who had the potential to be the best player in the draft which included Ben Simmons.

This proved to be very much true.

In his rookie season, Ingram was considered by those outsides of the Lakers organization a “flop”. His numbers for the season didn’t necessarily disprove the theory with Ingram averaging 9.4ppg, 4.0rpg, and 2.1apg, but for those who followed the Lakers closely, the talent was definitely there.

With a full offseason spent on getting his body into NBA shape and adding muscle to his slender frame, Ingram started his sophomore year and his numbers across the board shot up.

Ingram was able to show off his scoring touch, capable of getting buckets from anywhere. He was able to mix it up with more physically developed players in the paint and showed a real knack for playmaking.

He finished his second year with a Lakers averaging for the season 16.1ppg, 5.3rpg, and 3.9apg. A major jump in the right direction for “Slenderman”.

In his 3rd year, the leap in expectations was enormous, LeBron James had now signed for the purple and gold and expectations in Lakers land were Championship or bust. Ingram was expected to make the jump and be LeBron’s right-hand man alongside fellow youngsters in Kyle Kuzma and Lonzo Ball.

The Lakers season was going well until an injury to LeBron James caused him to miss large parts of the season derailed the Lakers season.

To coincide with this, Ingram developed a blood clot in his arm which forced his season to end early. With his safety and long-term health obviously being the main priority, Ingram sought the best medical advice in order to safely overcome his prognosis and had a procedure done in order to alleviate his ailment and stop it from happening in the future.

For the season Ingram averaged 18.3ppg, 5.1rpg, and 3.0apg. Before his injury, Ingram was rounding into All-Star form and showing the greater NBA audience that he was well worth the 2nd overall pick the Lakers spent on him.

Following the end of the 2018-19 season, after much trade chatter, Ingram alongside, Josh Hart, Lonzo Ball and a significant amount of draft picks were traded to the New Orleans Pelicans for superstar power forward Anthony Davis.

With his new team, Brandon Ingram has pushed his game to the next level. Averaging career-highs in points, rebounds, steals, and blocks, B.I has shown the rest of the NBA that he is a superstar in the making.

His ability to score from anywhere on the floor, to be a playmaker and his ability to use his length to get stops has made him the Pelicans best player this season. With his contract extension due soon, you can bet that Ingram is going to get paid.

The thought of this iteration of Brandon Ingram on this current Lakers team with LeBron James and Anthony Davis would be incredible.

With the Lakers struggling with scoring outside of Davis and LeBron and struggling with playmaking outside of LeBron and Rondo, Ingram would offer the perfect balance of both attributes to the purple and gold as well as offering a 3rd star capable of lightening the load for LeBron James during the season allowing him to fully focus on the playoffs.

Ingram has shown he can be a star this season. If he continues to get better, Ingram could easily be a multiple-time All-Star and be number 1 on this list.