If you ask Stephen A. Smith, he will say that the Los Angeles Lakers will have to trade one player before moving forward and improve.
The ESPN analyst says that the Lakers will have to trade Brandon Ingram, because he is not a good match for LeBron James and the rest of the players. Well, many would agree with Smith at this point.
Kyle Kuzma plays great alongside LeBron James. The second-year Laker averages 19.0 points on 49.0 percent from the field. Kuzma, LeBron and Lonzo Ball played really well during the time Ingram was out. That’s why Lakers head coach Luke Walton uses Kuzma and Ball as regular starters in his top five.
Ingram averages 15.5 points per game on 47.4 percent from the field. The Lakers may be better off with Josh Hart in the starting lineup as they can really benefit from his defensive and energy presence. Kuzma and Ingram can in no way play together at the same time.
Ingram is 21, and his value goes up high. The Los Angeles Lakers will have to drop a decision regarding the possible Ingram trade. Maybe they will decide to keep using him as a building block alongside King James.
During last year’s offseason, Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson said that Ingram is the only untouchable player on the roster.
“I would say probably the only player that we would say, hey, we would probably not move is Brandon Ingram,” Magic Johnson said.
“I think that we’re excited about Brandon, his length, his size, his agility, his athleticism. And then when you think about, you know, he was a baby coming in, in his first year last season and we see that he really has a high ceiling and we’re excited about what he can possibly turn into.”