Indeed, it looks like there will be a good deal of time. That’s because the Lakers are not moving any of the three, even as we enter the silly season of NBA trade discussions. According to league sources, the Lakers have not included any of the three into trade discussions, and do not figure to change that. They’re unlikely to consider moves involving their two other young role players, Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr., who figure to be key parts of the rotation in the near future.
That doesn’t much matter. Here’s what one Western Conference scout said about the state of the Lakers: “If you made a list of the 20 best players who are 22 or under, I think you’d have to have all three of the Lakers’ young guys on there. They’re three of the best young guys in the league. There’s really not a lot of teams can say that, and I think a lot of mediocre teams would like to swap rosters with the Lakers right now.”
Most encouraging, though, has been the way that Ingram has begun to break through, scoring in double digits in each of his past four games and shooting 50 percent or better from the field in five straight. Ingram is loaded with talent, and sometimes displays so much versatility that he doesn’t know on which area of his game he should focus. But, the scout said, “He is probably going to be the best of the three. When you look at his physical assets and what he is capable of just from a raw potential perspective, the sky is the limit. He has to be developed; that’s obvious. He looks to me like he is learning to assert himself more out on the floor. He’s got to figure out where he fits between Randle and Russell. But they’re so young, there will be plenty of time to make that smoother.”
July 31, 2021 | 3:47 pm EDT Update
Brandon Rahbar: Three time NBA champ and current Australian national team assistant coach Luc Longley on Josh Giddey: “I think his court vision and his spatial awareness and his understanding of the game is on the same level as LaMelo Ball. I’d be really surprised if he doesn’t kick some ass.”
Marc Stein: From the college ranks: Sources say Rasheed Wallace has emerged as a prime candidate to join Penny Hardaway’s Memphis staff as an assistant coach. Penny has already hired Larry Brown, the only coach to win NCAA and NBA titles, as an assistant.
July 31, 2021 | 2:42 pm EDT Update
Andrew Lopez: The Pelicans have extended the qualifying offer to both Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart making them restricted free agents, sources tell ESPN.