Lakers News: Darvin Ham Plans To Use All-Star Break To Further Integrate New Additions
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers go into All-Star Weekend with some positive momentum following their 18-point victory over the New Orleans Pelicans. The team was at full strength for the first time since the deadline with LeBron James returning and Mo Bamba making his Lakers debut. Head coach Darvin Ham also turned to a new starting lineup with D’Angelo Russell, Jarred Vanderbilt and Malik Beasley joining LeBron and Anthony Davis.

The trade deadline additions give the Lakers more depth and versatility with which to work and the onus will be on Ham to figure out how to best make things work. Just as important will be building the chemistry necessary to succeed and make that playoff run and Ham plans to use the upcoming All-Star break to help bring the team’s new additions up to speed.

“For sure. My coaching staff and I have talked about that extensively when we were meeting today and digging through the roster and putting different combinations up on the board,” Ham said when asked prior to the Lakers’ win over the Pelicans.

“Absolutely. Not just offensively, but defensively as well having a guy like Vando and another guy like Mo. Just having that extra additional rim protection aside from AD and Wenyen I think is gonna be huge. It’s a fun group when you look at it on paper, so definitely, we’re gonna try to hit the ground running once this break is over with.”

A bit of a break is necessary to ensure that the players’ bodies are well-rested and as good as they can be for the final stretch of this season. But that extra time to be able to work together and develop chemistry is absolutely crucial for this Lakers team.

It takes time for teams to gel, but that is something the Lakers just don’t have. They must come together fast and figure things out on the fly, but Ham and the Lakers coaching staff will do everything in their power to help accelerate that process and the All-Star break gives them a great window to do so.

D’Angelo Russell believes Lakers can’t dwell on built-in excuses

A team making the number of changes the Lakers did at the trade deadline can be a double-edged sword and that is the case with these Lakers. Building chemistry takes time, but the Lakers need to win games immediately in order to make the playoffs. As far as Russell is concerned, the team can’t afford to use those excuses, even if they are legit.

Russell noted that the Lakers have all the excuses they could use as they don’t have that continuity and chemistry. But they can either choose to focus on those negativities and use the excuses, or they can go on the court and make things happen.

The new Lakers point guard is of the mindset that whatever players Ham puts on the court have the capabilities to succeed and the rest of the Lakers seem to feel the same way.

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