Another tough season without a sniff of the playoffs has wrapped up for the Los Angeles Lakers — except it did not have a 60-point performance from Kobe Bryant to help flush out the year. Instead, this year’s drama and inconsistencies had the silver lining of hope and optimism for the direction of the team.
In his first exit interview as head coach, Luke Walton expressed his confidence on where the team and players are headed — especially Brandon Ingram. According to Lakers, Walton would like Ingram to work out with his former teammate Kobe Bryant in preparation for his sophomore season:
“He can learn a lot from someone like Kobe who’s been through it and had a lot of skill at a lot higher level than me or anyone on my staff.”
Ingram finished the season averaging 9.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 2.1 assists in 28.8 minutes per game. While Ingram had a slow start to his rookie season, he was a completely different player following the All-Star break. As for Bryant, he has been vocal on being willing to mentor the young core and helping out the franchise in any way he believes he can.
The offseason will also be President of Basketball Operation Magic Johnson and general manager Rob Pelinka’s first offseason to show what kind of impact they can have at the helm of the Lakers. As the Lakers are looking to learn if they will keep this year’s top-three protected draft pick, the future is bright in Los Angeles.