As the second overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft and someone tasked with helping to bring the most prominent NBA franchise back to glory, there will undoubtedly be a lot of pressure on Brandon Ingram from the outset of his NBA career.
Ingram has a ton of potential and is coming into an ideal situation with the Los Angeles Lakers as there is a big hole at the small forward position, meaning Ingram could step into the starting lineup immediately and will be expected to produce.
With high expectations and a promising situation, Ingram is one of the favorites to win the Rookie of the Year Award next season. According to Mark Medina of the LA Daily News, Bovada gave Ingram the third highest odds to win the award:
Per @BovadaLV: Brandon Ingram has 13/2 odds to win 2016-17 NBA Rookie of the Year. Ben Simmons (13/4) & Buddy Hield (11/2) have better odds
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) June 27, 2016
Ben Simmons being the favorite should come as no surprise as most considered him to have the highest ceiling of any player in the draft and he will immediately be the primary option in Philadelphia. Likewise, Buddy Hield is a more NBA-ready prospect and will be able to play off of All-Star Anthony Davis.
Whether Ingram ultimately wins the award or even comes, close remains to be seen, but as someone who has a lot of development ahead of him, Ingram’s first season shouldn’t be a sole judgment of how good he can eventually become.
As long as Ingram progresses throughout the season, along with the rest of the young core, it should be considered a good year for both the rookie, as well as the Lakers.