The Lakers are in a state of rebuilding in the wake of Kobe Bryant's retirement, but they certainly have some building blocks in place.
The young core fo D'Angelo Russell, Jordan Clarkson and Julius Randle struggled at various times last season, but there is a different feeling with Luke Walton as the new head coach.
Brandon Ingram is also a new addition having been selected second overall in the draft this summer.
The rangy small forward - who has drawn comparisons to Kevin Durant - seriously impressed Walton during the team's first training camp scrimmage and the new coach couldn't hide his delight.
“Brandon’s defense was phenomenal yesterday — last night. He’s starting to really understand how to use his length in fighting over screens and contesting jump shots and making people miss,” Walton said. “That was the most impressive part to his game last night.“
The Duke standout is sure to be contributor for the Lakers right away. Per NBA.com, the Purple and Gold gave up a league-worst 109.3 points per 100 possessions last season and Walton focused the vast majority of his first session in charge on defence.
Ingram's talents a welcome addition, but the rest of his more experienced teammates need to pick up some of the slack too.