Ever since he began his draft process last summer, Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram has drawn comparisons to Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant. With both being 6’9 (and growing), freakishly long, athletic forwards, the comparison, at least physically, makes sense.
Ingram has a ton of potential and it is noticeable to everyone. The Lakers front office obviously believes he has superstar potential, as do opposing teams as many tried to trade for Ingram, but were turned away. Even Durant himself sees the potential of Ingram and has tried to help the young forward.
In an interview with Michael Lee of Yahoo Sports Ingram revealed that Durant consistently sends him motivational messages and advice:
“[Durant] is always sending me motivational things. Though some things may need to be censored,” Ingram told Yahoo Sports. “He sees a lot in me. He actually told me to block out everything and be the killer that I am. To get a lot of guys around this league that see what I can be, it does nothing but make me want to work harder.”
The NBA is truly a family and even though players compete anytime they step on the court, stars are always willing to pass down advice to young players to help them grow. Durant has said that he sees some of himself in Ingram and he wants Ingram to realize that great potential.
Some of the Durant comparisons are a little unfair to Ingram as he was never the dominating scorer in college that Durant was, so expecting that to come immediately was foolish. However, Durant, like Ingram, struggled mightily with his shooting in his rookie season, and worked with now-Lakers assistant Brian Keefe to improve.
Ingram ended the preseason on a high-note and will look to continue that level of play in Thursday’s season opener against the Clippers. If he can heed Durant’s advice fans everywhere should see Ingram begin to turn the corner soon.