Now a quarter of the way into the 2019-20 NBA regular season, we’ve already seen a number of talented young players take their game to new heights early on. While Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic and Raptors forward Pascal Siakam have dominated the spotlight, fourth-year man Brandon Ingram is quietly blossoming into the superstar he was always expected to be.
In fact, Ingram has performed at such a high-level early on, that New Orleans Pelicans GM David Griffin has already made his mind regarding the forward’s looming free agency. With Ingram set to become a restricted free agent this summer, Griffin told The Undefeated’s Marc Spears that New Orleans is focused on keeping him around for the long haul.
Brandon Ingram, 22, is a restricted free agent next summer, but Griffin told The Undefeated that the Pelicans have every intention of keeping him long term.
After three seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers in which we never really got to see Ingram’s immense potential come to fruition, the Duke product has turned it up a couple of notches with the Pelicans. Through 15 games, Ingram is making his case as a potential All-Star selection with per-game averages of 25.9 points, 7.4 rebounds and 4 assists.
Of course, Ingram’s role in the Pels’ offense is inflated due to the injury to first overall pick Zion Williamson. Both Ingram and Zion are versatile forwards so the former may see his role reduced once Williamson finally returns to action.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean Brandon Ingram will be any less effective. In just a short stretch, Ingram has established himself as the clearcut primary option in New Orleans’ offensive attack, something he was never able to do in LA. Though his length and versatility allow him to match up with just about anyone, Ingram is usually best with the ball in his hands and has proven that this season.
With a scorching start to his season and no signs of slowing down, there will be no shortage of interest in Ingram once he hits the restricted free agency market in July. However, based on Griffin’s latest comments, it’d be a shock to see anyone pry Ingram away this offseason.