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Pelicans pay Brandon Ingram the big bucks

The New Orleans Pelicans are signing Brandon Ingram to a brand new contract.

Over the last few days, many NBA free agents have earned themselves new contracts. Meanwhile, several young prospects who are approaching their primes have been earning some major paydays.

Add Brandon Ingram to the list. The 23-year-old forward has statistically improved every season since the 2016 NBA Draft. After spending his first three seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, Ingram found himself traded to the New Orleans Pelicans in the deal that landed the Lakers the superstar big man, Anthony Davis.

At the time, Ingram wrapped up a season where he started in all 54 games he played in. Although Los Angeles failed to make the postseason, Ingram shined as he averaged 18 points-per-game while draining nearly 50-percent of his shots from the field.

During his first season in New Orleans, Ingram was even better. He started in 62 games with the Pelicans and averaged 23 points-per-game. Since New Orleans is a young team, that dealt with key injuries last season in a tough Western Conference, they failed to make the postseason.

However, Ingram’s individual success helped him get a max contract heading into year five. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Pelicans’ forward has agreed to a five-year deal worth $158 million. He now becomes the fourth player from his draft class to ink a max contract.