Lakers News: Darvin Ham Addresses Russell Westbrook’s Questionable Late-Game Decisions
Russell Westbrook, Darvin Ham, Los Angeles Lakers
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since Russell Westbrook embraced his role off the bench for the Los Angeles Lakers and flourished, the veteran point guard hasn’t received much heat for things he’s done on and off the floor.

However, Westbrook’s decision-making down the stretch in the loss to the Sacramento Kings on Friday was not ideal. He made some questionable decisions, and although the loss can’t solely be put on him, he definitely played a part in the team coming up short for the ninth time in 11 games.

After the game, Lakers head coach Darvin Ham was asked about Westbrook’s decision-making late in the game, and this is what he had to say about the former NBA MVP.

“Well, I just thought there were some unfortunate plays that he would normally make,” Ham said. “But if I had to do it all over again, I put them in those same situations. I thought he was huge for us tonight. Provided a huge boost at the three-point line. Overall, with his point total. And there’s times he pushed the pace, times he really put pressure on the paint. Found some guys for easy looks.

“But it’s tough. I got certain things that stick out in my mind. But without going over the film. You know, I can’t really get into detail. But I will say this, you know, again, if I had to do it all over again, he’d be in the game, for sure. And in those situations.”

Ham is not in the blame-game business. He’s only 13 games into his first head coaching gig in the league and doesn’t want to rattle Westbrook, especially while the nine-time All-Star is accepting a bench role for the first time in his career.

Although Ham doesn’t want to go backward with Westbrook at this point, it’s clear that having him on the floor in late-game situations is a risk. There’s no doubt that Westbrook has begun to turn things around, but he does some things that can frustrate coaching, teammates and the Lakers faithful.

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