Joe Ingles is a lot of things — a heralded sharpshooter, defensive stalwart, unofficial Australian ambassador, coffee lover, husband, father, and beloved cult figure.
He’s also a premier small forward in the NBA, and finds himself deeply entrenched within the top 10 at his position, thanks to his aptitude for poised and productive play.
On the precipice of his fifth NBA campaign, and with his 31st birthday in the rear view mirror, Ingles is set to once again fill a myriad of needs for the Utah Jazz.
To boil Ingles’ on-court impact down to a single word seems quite paradoxical, given his multiple talents. If you had to choose one word to describe him however, it’s undoubtedly consistent.
Ingles is consistent is so many ways. He is a top-three shooter from deep, steady in his decision making, and has almost always been in game shape.
In his first four seasons, Ingles has played in 342 of a possible 346 games for the Utah Jazz. The last time he failed to suit up for a Jazz game was in December of 2015. People with cushy office jobs call in sick more than Ingles does — and they don’t even have to guard Kevin Durant or Paul George.
Ingles’ consistency extends beyond just making himself available, though. He has made habitual and steady increases to his statistical output over the course of his four seasons with the Jazz as his role has increased.
Those stable statistical increases culminated in him averaging 13.1 points, 5.5 assists and 4.8 rebounds on 46 percent shooting from the field last season.
Solid. Reliable. Consistent.
The highlight of Ingles’ game though, is his ability to be an elite threat from deep every single night. The Aussie has shot 44 percent from downtown over the previous two seasons, and there is no reason why he won’t produce at a similar mark again this season in coach Snyder’s system.
Recently when asked about the confidence he has in his distance shooting, Ingles told reporters he was the best shooter in the league.
Jazz sharpshooter Joe Ingles says he’s the best shooter in the NBA. “I feel like they’re all gonna go in when I shoot the ball,” Ingles said. pic.twitter.com/icdM6CQvY5
— Eric Woodyard (@E_Woodyard) October 5, 2018
Consistency can’t always be measured by mere statistics or games played, though. Consistency is saying and doing the right things all the time — something Ingles has always made sure to do during his NBA tenure.
When the Jazz were plagued with injuries early last season and consiquently sputtered out of the gate, Ingles was the one keeping heads high.
“It’s just leaders like [Ingles] who keep guys together,” then Jazz Rookie Donovan Mitchell said of Ingles when the Jazz were sitting at 19-28 last season.
All this talk about Ingles’ consistency is to say we may very well know the type of season he is set to have based off of recent patterns — and it’s a damn good one.
There is no dramatic prediction that needs to be made with Ingles, because he isn’t a dramatic player. He’s predictable, and predictability is only adverse to a cause if the habits or patterns are bad. In the case of Joe Ingles, the habits and patterns are outstanding — ones that have elevated him to the upper echelon of small forwards in the league.
Will there be movement in his overall statistics or play? Of course.
Many factors are in play that will alter his production somewhat. The continued growth of budding superstar Donovan Mitchell, the expectations that come with lofty contracts received by Derrick Favors and Dante Exum, and the incoming Grayson Allen will all have an impact on Ingles somehow.
Overall though, we know what Joe Ingles is going to do this season; he’s going to play stellar perimeter defence, be a major threat from deep, lead the teams locker room, play a bunch of games, and as always, drinks copious amounts of coffee.
— Joe Ingles (@Joeingles7) September 14, 2018