To say Joe Ingles has started the NBA season impressively is one almighty understatement. Ingles hasn’t just commenced his fifth NBA campaign with an almighty flurry; he has put together the best two game stretch of his career.
On opening night in Sacramento, Ingles controlled Utah’s comeback against the plucky Kings. He was their best player, in the most typical of introductory slugfests. Against the Golden State Warriors on Friday night, Ingles set the NBA universe on fire with a performance that still feels like a mirage. Although, we should know better than to claim anything is beyond Ingles at this point.
He was pulling up from 30-feet. He was orchestrating a Jazz routine that pushed the reigning NBA champions to their very limits. And in the most appropriate of NBA acknowledgements, he was trending on Twitter during one of the best regular season games this decade. Deservedly so, too, as his performance was comparable to the MVP calibre opponents who opposed him in Salt Lake City.
Seventy-one minutes of basketball this season have produced 49 points, 10 assists and most remarkably of all, 27 field goal attempts – 17 of which have come from behind the three-point arc. The sheer number of attempts is the most impressive feat. Yes, he is shooting over 70% from the field through two games, but this will inevitably reduce as nobody – not even Ingles holding a flamethrower – can maintain such gaudy shooting.
His aggression, on the other hand, is something that is eminently sustainable. It represents the progression that Utah’s coaching staff wanted to see. Quin Snyder was vocal during the preseason, encouraging Ingles to be more assertive in searching for his offence. Especially his three point shot. The early results are definitive.