The Lakers have been lucky the past couple of years. After the 2012-2013 season things have only gone downhill, but they’ve been fortunate enough to land the No. 2 pick three years in a row. While D’Angelo Russell is now playing in Brooklyn alongside Timofey Mozgov, the Lakers have the last two picks in Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball.
Magic Johnson has made it publicly known that he covets those two and believes them to be really special players. He even went as far as to imply he believes that Lonzo will break some of his records and has said that Ingram is untouchable in a trade.
In Mike Trudell’s interview with Ingram and Lakers assistant coach Brian Keefe, Ingram commented on playing with Lonzo:
I think with my point guard Lonzo Ball kicking the ball ahead and the way we want to play fast … the sky is the limit.
You love everything on the court about him. The way he passes the basketball. His demeanor. The way he works.
Ingram seems to echo what everyone else close to Lonzo says: he’s a humble guy who guys love to play with and he’s a special passer. Often times we hear players get gassed up undeservedly by coaches and executives, but when there is this much smoke there has to be a fire, right?
Ingram also touched on Magic calling him untouchable. Ingram says he doesn’t feel uncomfortable about it. He says if anything it makes him want to work ever harder. Perhaps that was Magic’s motivation behind the comments:
It’s not a burden, but he put it on you, so you feel like you want to go even harder to show that this is the reason why he said this
Despite the high expectations, Ingram says that his own expectations for himself are even higher.
For me, my own expectations are higher than what anybody else can say.
Ingram has a lot to prove this season after being placed on a pedestal by Magic, as does Lonzo. Some players crack under the pressure and some don’t, but going by the comments of those around them it seems to me that they’re well prepared for this pressure and will try everything they can to prove Magic right.