Christmas Day ended with a whimper for the Los Angeles Lakers as they lost to the rival Boston Celtics.
The Lakers got off to a slow start as they went down by 12 points before fighting back in the second quarter. Los Angeles briefly took a lead in the third but couldn’t sustain that effort and allowed Boston to reclaim control.
Anthony Davis had a 40-point game, but the rest of the Lakers failed to get much going including LeBron James who had an uncharacteristically off game. It was clear afterwards that the Lakers and Celtics are in two different tiers at this point of the 2023-24 season.
Despite the Lakers’ loss, Darvin Ham was asked about how appreciative he is to be in the position to coach the Lakers against the Celtics on Christmas Day.
“It means a ton,” Ham said. “God is great. I thank my parents, I thank everyone that played a part in me being here – my wife, my children. Just growing up watching these games, being able to really enjoy them because I didn’t have a dog in the fight being from Michigan and a Pistons fan.
“But Magic Johnson was one of my favorite players growing up, still one of my favorite people to this day. Grew up on Magic, a home state guy. But to be a part of it is unbelievable. I’m very thankful, very humbled by it and it just puts that much more gasoline in my tank to try to accomplish the ultimate goal for this team.
“To be able to say I won a championship with Detroit and hopefully at some point win a championship with this franchise, it would be great. Where I came from, how I grew up and the things I’ve been through, it’s beautiful. I thank God every day for this opportunity.”
There aren’t many head coaches or players who get the honor of suiting up on Christmas, and Ham certainly was mindful of the opportunity he received with the Lakers. Now, however, he and the coaching staff must figure out a way to get the purple and gold back on track ahead of the new year.
Lakers want NBA to bring back Christmas Day uniforms
Playing on Christmas Day is a special event for fans and players, and James is no stranger to playing on the holiday as he appeared in his record 18th Christmas game against the Celtics. For Rui Hachimura, though, it was his first time playing on Christmas.
Both James and Hachimura were disappointed that the NBA didn’t do unique Christmas uniforms for the Lakers and other teams, and are hoping they bring it back.
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