After 10-Years in the G League, Lakers’ Andre Ingram Realizes NBA Dream
After spending 10-years in the NBA’s development grounds, Andre Ingram knew the drill.
The G League season has come to a close and he was set to meet with the higher-ups for his exit interview. Only at the culmination of his 10th season in the Los Angeles Lakers franchise, this final meeting was set to be slightly different than the nine he attended prior. In fact, this meeting was about something more than he could have ever imagined.
He was set to make his NBA debut as part of the Lakers.
After 10-relentless years of hard work down in the G League, Andre Ingram will play at Staples Centre on Tuesday night against the Houston Rockets.
“It was a once in a lifetime [moment],” Said a humbled and speechless Ingram following the 105-99 loss. “Everyone was like, ‘Man, when you get it, just let it go,'” Ingram said. “Everyone was like that. All the players, all the coaches. From the team warm-ups, the atmosphere was electric. You could feel something in there. MVP chants [while at the free throw line], that’s just crazy. Like I said [to myself], ‘Make the free throw, make the free throw, make the free throw.'”
Andre Ingram!! 10 years in the DLeague, gets a call-up, 11 points in first 6 min in the NBA! Anyone whose chased their hoop dreams can appreciate this…too good
— Jeremy Lin (@JLin7) April 11, 2018
But Ingram wasn’t just a bystander for the night – he balled out. In his debut game, Ingram put up 19-points on 6-for-8 shooting, adding three blocks, a steal, three boards, and four three-pointers in the historic effort. The G League’s leader in career three-pointers made, Ingram’s evening took centre stage, on a night in which many teams were still fighting for post season positioning.
Prior to checking into the game, Ingram shared a moment with Rockets All-Star point guard Chris Paul.
“I told him I heard about his story and that grind is unbelievable,” said Paul of the conversation following the win. . “I told him ‘much respect.’ Ten years grinding in the G League, and to finally get an opportunity and to play like that, that is pretty special.”
Ingram’s 19-points was the most points scored in a post-All Star break debut since Danny Finn scored 28 back in 1953. While this was only his first ever NBA game, Ingram will now focus on an encore performance as the Lakers are set to take on the Los Angeles Clippers in their season finale on Wednesday night.
“Of course there were times of, ‘I’m not sure if this day is going to happen or not,'” Ingram said. “But so thankful it did.”
This is why we play.