Tuesday, the Los Angeles Lakers announced they have officially signed their number two overall draft pick, Brandon Ingram. General manager Mitch Kupchak announced the signing but could not disclose the details of the deal, per team policy. Rumors have surfaced that the deal could be worth $23 million over four years, including $5.3 million for his rookie season.
Ingram is the Lakers’ third-consecutive lottery draft pick joining Julius Randle, the 7th overall pick in 2014 and D’Angelo Russell, the second pick in the 2015 draft as the franchise’s new leaders.
Just 18 years old, Ingram was named the ACC freshman of the year last season at Duke and is arguably the best prospect coming out of this year’s draft class. At 6’9 with a wingspan of 7’3, the rookie has already been compared to Kevin Durant. It’s not just that his body type and stature are similar to Durant’s, but because he has an innate ability to score and executes at a high percentage from three. Durant himself has been impressed by Ingram, a member of the 2016 USA men’s basketball select team, stating that Ingram is ahead of where he was at age 18.
Ingram averaged 17.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 2.0 assists in his single season at Duke and in five Summer League starts he averaged 12.2 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.8 assists. He was the second leading scorer for the Lakers behind Russell and should easily find the bottom of the basket when fully adjusts to the NBA.