In a season that featured numerous injuries for the Los Angeles Lakers, none garnered more fear than that of Brandon Ingram. The third-year forward was diagnosed with DVT by team doctors after missing a few games with a strained shoulder, the blood clots ending his season early once again.
Later on, Ingram had surgery to remove the structural damage that created the clot, leaving most optimistic that the forward would fully recover from the health scare since it is not a genetic or blood issue.
Nevertheless, teams around the league may not fully buy into that information. As ESPN’s Brian Windhorst noted on The 30 Podcast (part of the Silver Screen and Roll network), Ingram’s trade value may be at an all-time low:
Brandon Ingram’s blood clot really complicated his trade value, and I hate to talk about trade value when referring to a life-threatening situation, and I really want to emphasize that I really feel for him. I had a blood clot at one time in my life. The treatment for it sucks. The medication they give you makes you feel like crap and you have to stay on it for months. He is now — fair or not — a damaged asset. And I know the report came out there that it was structural and that everything is going to A-OK, I’m just going to tell you that not every team is going to believe that, and fair or not, Brandon Ingram’s trade value has diminished and it makes it very complicated to sign him to a contract extension this year because you’re gonna be worried about it coming back. And you can’t get insurance on it now… I’m really glad they caught it and that he’s okay and can continue his career. There are a lot of instances of players who’ve had a single blood clot and gone on to play and have been fine, and I really hope that’s the case. But when it comes to this particular summer, I think his trade value — I don’t think, I know in talking to other teams his trade value has taken a big hit.
A few things to note from Windhorst’s statements:
Yes, there were reporters asking around about Ingram’s recovery process after surgery. But the actual surgery and what it detailed was announced by the organization. So if the issue truly was not structural and they lied, there would likely be major repercussions for the franchise.
The other thing to note is that Windhorst is making a fairly strong claim here. He is not speculating about Ingram’s trade value but has, in fact, spoken to other executives to gauge it. The semantics of it being at an all-time low may not be fully accurate but he truly does believe that Ingram’s trade value has diminished greatly.
Obviously, Ingram’s health is the biggest part of all this. Trade value means nothing in relation to that.
However, in the NBA, teams area always looking to gain an advantage and even leaking that Ingram’s health is concerning could pay dividends down the line in trade talks. With the New Orleans Pelicans seemingly unwilling to trade Anthony Davis to the Lakers, however, that may not be an immediate issue.