The Los Angeles Lakers will have a tall task ahead as they host the Golden State Warriors on Friday night at the Staples Center. Along with facing the toughest test thus far in the regular season, rookie Brandon Ingram will get to face his idol, Kevin Durant, for the first time in the regular season.
Ingram admits to modeling his game after the superstar. The 19-year-old rookie wants to pattern his game after Durant but also wants to create his own identity in the NBA, via Mark Medina of the OC Register:
“I try to compare my game and pattern it after him. But at the end of the day, I want to be Brandon Ingram,” he said. “When I grew up, I always wanted to be just like him. But I think the comparison is beyond my years. The comparison is more when he came into the league.”
Ingram has been compared to Durant ever since bursting on the scene with Duke last year. The rookie’s skinny frame is very similar in comparison to Durant’s when he came into the league back in 2007 as well as their style of play.
Ironically enough, Ingram’s link to Durant goes a bit deeper with Walton bringing on assistant Brian Keefe who was the player development coach for the Seattle Supersonics and Oklahoma City Thunder during Durant’s first years in the league. Ingram talked about the irony that Keefe is now helping him adjust to the NBA level, via Medina:
“That’s ironic,” Ingram said of the connection. “Coming in, I didn’t know he worked with (Durant). It’s helped me a lot with his teaching and the routine that he has given me to work on every day.”
At this point, there’s no telling where Ingram’s ceiling is in the NBA. No one questions his talents or his potential, but there’s a long way to go before we see whether he can become a player of Durant’s caliber.