The Los Angeles Lakers have not had a lot of depth the last few seasons. However, after a few years picking highly in the NBA Draft, they are starting to develop some talent. Sure, the team still isn’t very good, but new head coach Luke Walton actually has some decisions to make on who is going to start. In particular, he has to figure out what to do with Brandon Ingram.
The Lakers made Ingram the second overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft. He’s definitely going to be a starter, and a key contributor, for this team unless something goes horribly wrong. His most ideal position at the moment is small forward. However, the Lakers signed Luol Deng this offseason for four years and $72 million. He’s also an option at small forward. Deng can play some power forward, and Ingram could be moved to shooting guard a la Kevin Durant as a rookie. Primarily, though, they are both small forwards…and only one of them can start.
Walton would not commit to naming a starter at small forward. “You can pencil in whoever you want [to the starting lineup], I don’t have anyone penciled in right now,” he said. “Everyone earns his spot. You come into camp, you compete against other players, you respect your teammates, but whoever outplays the next guy in line, that’s who gets to start.”
Deng has the veteran presence, but Ingram has the potential and he’s the one who will likely be a focal point for the next contending Lakers team. Only one of them can start, though. Walton has to make a decision eventually.
(h/t SB Nation)