Darvin Ham: Lakers Coming Back From Down 3-0 Against Nuggets Is Difficult But Not Impossible
Darvin Ham, Lakers, Nuggets
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Coming back home to Crypto.com Arena, there was optimism and even some confidence that the Los Angeles Lakers could get back on track against the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals.

However, the Nuggets looked like the team that was down 2-0 in the series as they raced out to a double-digit lead in the first quarter behind 17 points from a red-hot Jamal Murray. Los Angeles managed to pick things up in the second quarter, though they still trailed by three points at halftime.

Despite rough showings from D’Angelo Russell and Jarred Vanderbilt in the first half, Darvin Ham stuck with the same starters which led to the Nuggets retaking the momentum. It wasn’t until Ham went inserted Rui Hachimura and Dennis Schroder that the Lakers changed the tide of the game and even took a lead in the fourth quarter.

Unfortunately, Denver responded with a run in the middle of the final period that stunned Los Angeles and pushed them down a 3-0 hole. While no team’s been able to overcome a series deficit of that magnitude, Ham remained even-keeled about his team’s chances even if he knows how good of a team the Nuggets are.

“This is a tough ballclub. You know, shout out to them. Again, they have been at the top of the food chain for a reason and have a plethora of guys that can hurt you, as was on full display tonight,” Ham said of the Nuggets.

“But you know, circumstances are what they are. Difficult but not impossible. We just need to come out, start the recovery process now and get ready to get a game on Monday.”

Ham reiterated that the Nuggets still need to win one more game to advance and isn’t giving up hope just yet.

“Absolutely,” Ham said when asked if he still believes the Lakers can come back in the series. “I mean, I think the deficit is 3-0, not 4. So as long as they have not gotten to four yet, there’s still hope. We’re still alive. We just have to focus on winning one game.”

One can appreciate the positivity that Ham exudes in such a difficult position, but the truth of the matter is that in all likelihood the Lakers’ run to a title ended after Game 3. Denver looks like the title favorite with how well they’re playing on both ends of the floor, and even if L.A. can still a game or two beating them four times seems like a fool’s errand.

At this point, fans should hope for a better showing in Game 4 and to close out the year strong. There’s no shame in losing to the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, though everyone in the organization has every right to feel disappointed with the result.

LeBron James emphasizes who starts shouldn’t matter as long as Lakers win

The Nuggets have forced the Lakers to adjust much more than they have, and ahead of Game 4 Ham might need to make another lineup change to give themselves a shot. Should he make a move, he’d have LeBron James’ support as he emphasized who starts shouldn’t matter as long as L.A. wins.

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