Darvin Ham Explains What Trade Deadline Acquisitions Will Bring To Lakers
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It was a successful trade deadline for the Los Angeles Lakers as they managed to overhaul the roster and address several areas of concern.

The biggest move came the day before the deadline as they traded away Russell Westbrook, Juan Toscano-Anderson and Damian Jones for D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt. In one move, the Lakers managed to add outside shooting, size and depth to help round out the team.

Darvin Ham discussed some of the new additions that came in the Westbrook trade, noting that Los Angeles should have better spacing and rim protection.

“I just think we added some pieces that are young and still on the uptick,” Ham said before Thursday’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks. “They’ve proven themselves to be really effective NBA players and also fit the needs that we have in terms of creating more spacing for LeBron and AD while also bringing in some guys that can make a huge impact on the defensive end with rim protection. It was great. It’s a constant in this league that your No. 1 job is you try to make your team better.

“All 30 teams have that mindset that if there are ways you can get better, you explore it. The other thing that people never talk about is that it’s not a red flag on your resume if you get traded. You have to give up value to get value and so we saw the opportunity to make our team better and we pushed the button on it. It’s as simple as that, the business of basketball.”

As far as how all the new pieces will fit, Ham said that he’ll work with the staff to figure out the best ways to use everyone.

“I think it gives us a chance to shuffle some pieces around. All of those guys bring unique skillsets. Skillsets that we need like shooting, playmaking, energy, defense, rebounding. A lot of needs they’ll be able to address along with the guys that are still remaining. My staff and I will sit down and go through the new roster and see what makes sense.”

Bringing in so many new players at once means it’ll take time for everyone to gel together, though Ham outlined how he and the rest of the coaches will try to fast track the learning process.

“It just starts with getting them in the gym, film work, film study. We have a great coaching staff that is really doing their due diligence, crossing every T, dotting every I. A lot of script work, a lot of breakdown work in terms of how we want to defend so they can get accustomed to that and just mesh them in. They’re gonna have their little periods of discovery and trying to find the right rhythm, you go through that whole process.

“But we feel good, these are high-level, high-IQ basketball players so we feel great in implementing them into what we’re doing and they’re well-aware in terms of what we’re trying to accomplish in securing a spot in the postseason.”

It’s an exciting time for the Lakers who look much better on paper than they did just a couple of days ago. Although there isn’t much time left in the season, L.A. has to feel good about their chances with so many reinforcements on the way.

Darvin Ham expects new additions to play on Saturday against Warriors

All the new Lakers are currently in the process of getting situated with the team so they were not available for the tilt against the Milwaukee Bucks. However, Ham expects they’ll be able to make their debuts this Saturday against the Golden State Warriors.

“Saturday is definitely on the table. They’ve gone through the logistics as far as getting here into the market and also going through the process of physicals. We’ll get in with them tomorrow morning, tomorrow is a travel day, but we’ll get with them on the plane and try to start the process of getting them up to speed on both sides of the ball and how we do things.”

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