With Friday night’s 108-94 loss to the Charlotte Hornets, the Los Angeles Lakers surpassed last year’s longest losing streak by dropping their ninth straight game. Only a few of the current players were around for last year’s rough stretch, but one of them was Brandon Ingram.
While last season Ingram was a young, quiet rookie, he has grown into one of the team leaders this year, taking responsibility for the Lakers’ struggles. The Lakers seemed to be making strides from a year ago and that is why these losses are more frustrating than ever.
“It’s kind of depressing, because we think we’re a better team than last year,” Ingram said. “We know we can be better every single night. But we also know that this is a process.”
The journey of transforming from a bad team to a contender is a long one and Ingram understands that it is not linear. “Everything is not going to be good all the time. We’re a very young team, so it’s important for us to stick to what we’re doing, trying to grind it out, and just continue to stay strong.”
Lakers players as well as head coach Luke Walton appear to be on the same page as far as what they need to do to get back on track, which is improving defensively. Even with mounting frustrations, Ingram maintains that the locker room is fine.
“The state of the locker room has always been good, because we’re friends off the basketball court,” he said.
“I’m not actually sure how, after that meeting, we could’ve responded. We’ve got different things we need to do but like I said, it’s not going to happen right away unless we all put it out there and play with effort and passion.”
If the Lakers are going to turn things around, they will have to do it together as a team. It is important to not get too down even as the losses continue, something Ingram is still struggling with individually.
“Sometimes I find myself too low a little bit. After good games I never try to be too high,” he said. “Just try to look at the games and see where we can get better, whether we win or lose. It’s going to be a process for us to learn how to win.”
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