Lakers select Duke's Ingram with the No. 2 pick in NBA Draft

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Friday, June 24, 2016
Duke's Brandon Ingram is heading to the Lakers.
Duke's Brandon Ingram is heading to the Lakers.

Kinston native Brandon Ingram, a talented 6-9 forward from Duke was taken No. 2 overall by the Los Angeles Lakers, right behind LSU's Ben Simmons, who went No. 1 overall to the Philadelphia 76ers in the 2016 NBA Draft.

With Ingram, the Lakers added another talented teenager to the rebuilding club's young core Thursday night.

WATCH: ABC11's Mark Armstrong talks to Brandon Ingram after his selection

Ingram spent one season at Duke, averaging 17.3 points and 6.8 rebounds as an immediate star for the Blue Devils.

Pro scouts were tantalized by his 41 percent shooting on 3-pointers, and his lanky frame only heightened the comparisons to Kevin Durant.

"I'm just going to be myself," Ingram said. "Whatever I can do to impact the game, whatever the coach needs me to do, I'm going to do it."

After the 76ers chose Australian big man Simmons with the top pick, the Lakers eagerly grabbed Ingram as they rebuild from Kobe Bryant's retirement and the worst season in franchise history (17-65).

The next Triangle-area player taken was North Carolina power forward Brice Johnson, who was taken by the Los Angeles Clippers with the No. 25 overall pick.

WATCH: ABC11's Mark Armstrong talks to Brice Johnson after his selection

Johnson, 21, averaged 17.0 points and 10.4 rebounds per game as a senior for the Tar Heels last season. The 6-foot-10, 230-pound forward was a consensus first team All-America selection last season and the Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA East Regional.

Johnson pulled down a school-record 23 double-doubles last season and became the fifth UNC player to average a double-double for a season. He also became the first Tar Heel to score 20 points and grab 10 rebounds in three consecutive NCAA Tournament games.

North Carolina's Brice Johnson (11) reacts during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against UCLA Saturday, Dec. 19, 2015, in New York.
Frank Franklin II

Johnson increased his scoring and rebounding averages every season at UNC. He shot 57.5 percent from the floor in his career and 70.8 percent from the free throw line.

Johnson is expected to back up All-Star power forward Blake Griffin, the only power forward the Clippers have signed for next season. Last year's reserve big men Jeff Green, Luc Mbah a Moute, Wesley Johnson and Cole Aldrich are all scheduled to become free agents.

The No. 25 pick is tied for the highest the Clippers have drafted since 2010. The last time they had the No. 25 pick they took another North Carolina player, shooting guard Reggie Bullock in 2013.

Johnson's Tar Heels teammate, guard Marcus Paige was selected by the Brooklyn Nets in the second round with the 55th overall pick and promptly traded him to the Utah Jazz.

NC State's Anthony "Cat" Barber went undrafted, and is now free to negotiate and sign with any team.

Meanwhile, the Charlotte Hornets traded the rights to freshman guard Malachi Richardson of Syracuse, the 22nd pick, to Sacramento for guard Marco Belinelli.

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