Lakers Notes: Ingram, Ball, George, Robinson

The Lakers are wasting an opportunity to prove they can be successful without LeBron James and may be getting a clearer picture of the value of Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball, writes Bill Oram of The Athletic. 1-4 since James suffered a strained left groin, and the team learned Friday that he won’t be re-evaluated for another week.

The most troubling game in that stretch was last night’s loss to the Knicks, who have been near the bottom of the East all season. With the game on the line in the fourth quarter, Oram writes, Ingram became a one-dimensional player, making just one of five shots, while Ball tried to force passes and committed a couple of key turnovers.

“Brandon and Lonzo right now are our primary ballhandlers,” coach Luke Walton said, “and I think they led us in turnovers tonight. I’m not putting the blame on them, but that’s part of the responsibility of being a point guard, or being a primary ballhandler-slash-playmaker, is taking care of the ball and getting guys going, getting other guys easy looks.”

There’s more Lakers news to pass along:

  • Ingram may be the next young talent sacrificed in the quest to build a super team in L.A., suggests Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report. The Lakers have already parted with D’Angelo Russell, Larry Nance, Jordan Clarkson and Julius Randle to clear cap room, and it may become necessary to do the same with Ingram to have a shot at Anthony Davis. If the Pelicans hang onto Davis and he becomes a free agent in 2020, the Lakers can’t afford the $21.8MM cap hold Ingram would have as a restricted free agent. However, he could turn out to be a valuable trade piece if Davis turns down a supermax offer and New Orleans feels compelled to move him this summer.
  • Paul George got an unfriendly reception from Lakers fans this week, but he explained that he made a business decision to stay in Oklahoma City, relays Brett Dawson of The Athletic. There was hope last season that George might return to his native Southern California in free agency, but he decided he had a better situation with the Thunder. “The Lakers is one of the best, most historical franchises in the world,” George said. “It is what it is. I’m with another great organization.”
  • The Lakers gave strong consideration to taking Mitchell Robinson with their first-round pick last summer, but the rookie center believes he’s better off with the Knicks, according to Marc Berman of The New York Post. With L.A. hoping to make the playoffs, Robinson thinks he might have spent much of the season in the G League rather than as an NBA starter.
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13 thoughts on “Lakers Notes: Ingram, Ball, George, Robinson

  1. jeremy

    Ingram time might be running out. When he on he looks great but when he struggles he looks like he shouldn’t be there. His last two games of shooting for 38% and having 9 turnovers to 8 assist doesn’t look good for him. Ball I’ll give him a break because he in his second season.

  2. dust44

    Ingram is the main piece to move for a second star. But he’s got to develop alittle more then what he’s shown to b that piece. No way they use Kuzma or Hart. They fit too well with LeBron. And Wagner hasn’t played much at all. So he is purely speculation at how good he might b right now.

    • Well they’re not getting much for Ingram or Ball. Kuzma is really the only one of the young guys with much trade value at all.

  3. Eric Lord

    If New Orleans feels compelled to move Davis, I doubt they trade him to the Lakers, especially after Lebron’s comments. The Spurs refused to trade Leonard to the Lakers this past summer & the Pelicans likely will do the same. The Lakers organization would be smart to just keep their mouths shut on potential players coming to LA

  4. Ingram needs to play off the ball more. He’s a fine player to be a “primary playmaker” some of the time but his length can be used with more versatility off the ball and his handle isn’t particularly great to be handling the ball a lot. I don’t think Luke knows how to utilize the young talent very well. He figured Kuzma out but he hasn’t utilized Ball or (especially) Ingram in ways that will benefit their games.

  5. imindless

    Honestly as a long time lakers fan I am getting tired of the young guys lazy work ethic. I have defended ingram for years and honestly I am done doing so. Both lonzo and ingram have terrible work ethic and rely on there natural abilities. If they want to be great they have to put in time on shooting and attacking offenses. If not we will be looking at another 2 bust for how high we drafted them.

  6. raisethejollyroger

    Most all young players with an ounce of talent are either 1- head cases 2- entitled and told they are the best when they are athletic but not skilled basketball players. 3- lazy with little to no work ethic. That being said Ingram is 21 years old! He’s still a kid! Everyone needs to calm down, and quit acting like a kid in his 3rd year needs to be Kevin Durant yesterday.

  7. The problem the Lakers and both guys have is they’re both still projects that need starter PT without high production expectations, and the Lakers are in win now mode. Question is how to keep them on the floor. Neither is a natural outside shooter, which, in this era, makes it tougher to find secondary roles for them. In any event, right now, they can’t be the guys you run the offense through if you’re expecting to win.

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