December 11, 2017 | 5:23 pm EST Update
How much does it help having Coach Luke Walton for a second year in a row? And now that you’ve had experience with him and his system, how is your chemistry? Brandon Ingram: Chemistry-wise, we’re really good. Everybody gets along. Me and Coach Walton have a really good relationship. I can always go to him, even to talk about things that I don’t like. We’ve developed a relationship where we can always talk about the different things that we’re seeing on the floor. We discuss how we can get better [as a team] and how I can get better individually.
Kevin Durant recently complimented you, saying that you are a “killer” and that you’re the first player he’s seen where he feels like he’s “looking in the mirror.” How does it feel having stars like Durant and others speak so highly of you? Brandon Ingram: It makes me want to continue to try to get better, continue to try to be the best player on the floor every single night and continue to work hard on the floor.
This year, you guys obviously added Lonzo Ball with your No. 2 pick in the draft. How is your chemistry with Lonzo and what do you think of how he’s played so far? Brandon Ingram: Our chemistry has been really good and I think it’s going to keep getting better as we figure out each other’s game. Sometimes, we have plays where I just tell him where I want to be on the floor and he’ll get me the ball just like that. Our chemistry off the floor is really good too. He’s going to be a really good player.
Who are some players that you study and try to learn from? I know this gets asked a lot during the draft process, but I’m always curious who current players are studying. Brandon Ingram: There are a lot of guys around the league, whether they’re smaller players or bigger players. Whether it’s watching Giannis [Antetokounmpo] going to the rim, whether it’s watching KD with his pull-up jumper, whether it’s watching Shaun Livingston with his post work and ability to shoot over guys… I try to watch anyone else who has the size and length to shoot over other guys, like I have. You can take bits and pieces away from watching those guys.
David Aldridge: When you played the Lakers the first time, you had an historic game — 46 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists, seven blocks. What was that like, being in a game where everything is working? Joel Embiid: I was just playing basketball. I was making plays, my teammates were finding me. They were feeding me, I looked unstoppable, and I feel like I’m unstoppable. So I kept going at it, and they tried to make adjustments, but I felt like it was too late. It was exciting in my head. The Lakers fans, they were talking (bleep) in the stands, and I love that. That got me going. So it was just, I don’t know the feeling, but that was kind of like my first time going through that. Just bucket after bucket. It was different.