After three seasons of turmoil in Los Angeles, Duke sensation Brandon Ingram was finally given room to blossom in New Orleans. 36 games in, and boasting a new career-high, it's clear that he hasn't wasted the opportunity.
As one of the top candidates for the Most Improved Player award, Ingram is averaging 25 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists on 47% shooting. He's putting the world on notice, including NBA analyst Kirk Goldsberry, who says the young forward has the potential to be better than Philly star Ben Simmons.
Perhaps the comparison has as much to do with Simmons as it does with Ingram. For as good as Simmons is, his struggles to shoot the ball beyond a few feet from the basket have posed a big problem for him and the Sixers.
Not only has it limited his offensive game, but it has become a huge liability to the team. His pairing with Embiid in the frontcourt makes an awkward fit at times because both players operate under the rim.
There are a lot of question marks surrounding Simmons and Philadelphia right now, questions that will intensify if they suffer an early playoff exit this spring.
The development of Ingram and other young stars around the league is really putting his limitations in perspective.