When former NBA All-Star Jerry Stackhouse first met future NBA lottery pick Brandon Ingram, he didn’t know him as Brandon Ingram. He knew him as Donald’s son. Or Bo’s little brother. He knew him as the little kid that would tag along with his dad and older brother to the gym.
The signs of basketball promise would eventually emerge. It was obvious that Ingram would grow into a basketball player’s body. His work ethic was never a question. And then there was the fact that this skinny little kid could flat out shoot the basketball.
Navigating your way to basketball stardom is a tough task. Luckily, our latest cover athlete, Brandon Ingram, had 18-year NBA veteran Jerry Stackhouse lending a helping hand during Ingram’s journey to The League.
Now, the mentor and mentee have some advice they want to pass on to you. So look no further. Here are six tips for basketball success.
Brandon Ingram: “I wake up every day with a passion for the game and for the opportunity to be on the floor doing something I’ve been doing my whole life.”
Block Out Doubt
Brandon Ingram: “Of course doubt gets me going, but I don’t let that get to me. I just want to be a great basketball player and that’s what drives me. Whether it was long nights I spent in the gym with my dad and my brother or long nights with Jerry (Stackhouse), I always believed that I could be great if I put in the work.”
Focus On The Future
Brandon Ingram: “The work I’m putting in now is more for the future than for now. I’m just developing a routine right now that will help me in the years to come.”
Listen And Learn
Brandon Ingram: “Every single day I go in listening and looking to improve. I haven’t been in this league long, so I just try to be coachable and take any piece of advice I can get from any coach or any veteran on the floor. I try to take any advice and put it into my game so I can lead by example.”
Jerry Stackhouse: “The great players that I’ve been around, the difference was we were coming back to the gym late at night when there was nobody in the gym but us. And then you know you got that sweat equity. When you’re in the trenches, you look at your teammates when the game is on the line – you know that you can get it done.”
Jerry Stackhouse: “You got to make sure you get that work. The same parties that they were talking about when I was 20, they’re still talking about now that I’m 42. You aren’t going to miss anything, I promise you.
As the No. 2 pick in the draft, Brandon Ingram is one of the most recognizable rookies in the league, and perhaps Los Angeles’ next superstar, but just a few short years ago he was like any other young athlete: a relatively unknown player trying to make a name for himself.
Ingram’s story starts in the basketball-crazy town of Kinston, North Carolina, the hometown of NBA players like Reggie Bullock and Jerry Stackhouse. It didn’t take long for basketball to become Ingram’s obsession and he quickly found himself spending long nights in the gym with his dad and brother.
His talent was undeniable, but it wasn’t until he began playing extensively on the AAU circuit that his career really took off. Ingram began working with his idol, Jerry Stackhouse, forming a bond that remains strong to this day. Eventually, Ingram joined Stackhouse’s AAU team, Stackhouse Elite, and his career exploded.
adidas made a huge splash at the 2016 NBA Draft by signing some of the biggest names and top prospects to represent the brand. While Nike reeled in the biggest fish by signing No. 1 overall pick Ben Simmons, adidas bolstered its basketball roster with five of the top seven picks.
Basketball brands always look to add talented players to their lineup, and adidas has scored a good amount of potential star power with this group of top-rated rookies. Meet the newest members of the adidas Basketball family.
No. 2 pick Brandon Ingram
Brandon Ingram is probably the most exciting adidas signee. Ingram was heavily considered for the first overall pick, but he might be in a better situation after going No. 2 overall. The 6-foot-9 small forward is a ridiculous athlete who starred at Duke for one season before declaring for the draft.
He will be playing in Los Angeles, the second biggest market in the country and a franchise well-known for its star power. With Kobe Bryant’s retirement, the city of Los Angeles will be looking for its next basketball superstar, and Ingram has the chance to fill that role. Ingram, along with teammates D’Angelo Russell and Julius Randle, form a young, up-and-coming core that Los Angeles fans can be excited about.
No. 3 pick Jaylen Brown
Like Ingram, Jaylen Brown also has the benefit of landing in a big sports market with one of the most passionate fan bases in the country. It doesn’t hurt that Boston also has the most successful franchise in NBA history, with 17 championships.
Boston took a step back after the dismantling of the Big 3, and the franchise hopes Brown will be a big part of its resurgence. Brown spent his only year of college at Cal, where the small forward averaged 14.6 points per game. Brown was a top recruit coming out of high school, and he lived up to the hype in college. As the No. 3 pick, there is plenty of hype for Brown to live up to once again.
No. 4 pick Dragan Bender
Every year, it seems there is a foreign player at the top of the draft who draws a lot of interest. Croatia’s Dragan Bender is the 2016 Draft’s international man of mystery.
He spent the past season playing for Maccabi Tel Aviv, one of the top teams in the Euroleague. Bender is described as one of the most unique prospects this season, given his size and skill set. The big man played point guard in his youth, giving him rare passing abilities for a 7-footer. He’ll suit up in Phoenix next season, where they hope he can replicate the successful rookie campaign of New York’s Kristaps Porzingis, another 7-footer who played overseas before coming to the NBA.
No. 5 pick Kris Dunn
Kris Dunn was largely considered the top point guard in the draft and will spend his rookie season in Minnesota. Dunn joins an exciting young core and could be called upon to steer an offense that includes the No. 1 picks from 2014 and 2015 — fellow adidas athlete Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns.
Dunn starred at Providence College, where he averaged 16 points, 6 assists, and 5 rebounds per game last season. At 6-foot-4, he’s got good size for a guard. He’s an explosive athlete and an elite defender with all the tools to be an NBA star.
No. 7 pick Jamal Murray
Jamal Murray hails from Canada and spent his lone college season at Kentucky, a school well-known for churning out NBA athletes in recent years. He’ll spend his rookie season in Denver. Like Dunn, he’s got good
size for a guard. He is a prolific 3-point shooter and can play both the point guard and shooting guard positions.
Murray emerged as the star of a stacked recruiting class at Kentucky, where he averaged 20 points per game. His versatility and scoring abilities should go over well in Denver, where a combo guard scoring threat is sorely needed.
We want to hear from you
It’s always a bit of a guessing game when it comes to the draft. What do you think of this rookie class? Let us know. Leave a comment telling us what you think of the new adidas signees and who you think has the most star power.