With the team struggling mightily over the past month, rumors have begun to swirl around the future of Los Angeles Lakers head coach Darvin Ham. The team came into this season with championship aspirations, but things have not clicked lately and the Lakers now find themselves below .500.
Early season struggles are nothing new to Ham who dealt with this last season, and the Lakers were in a worse spot then than they are now. But with recent reports suggesting a rift potentially growing between Ham and the Lakers players, some are wondering if that seat is getting hotter.
But it doesn’t sound like the Lakers organization is at that point just yet. According to Sam Amick of The Athletic, the Lakers are not yet on the verge of firing Ham, though there is pressure being applied on him to turn things around:
Yet as we’re reminded every year, there’s a significant difference between the mood around a coach souring and the power brokers above him actually deciding to make a change. With that in mind, a high-ranking Lakers source pushed back against the idea Ham is on the verge of being fired. Still, serious pressure from within is clearly being applied on Ham, and there’s no better way for him to relieve it than by winning his way out in the days and weeks to come.
One of the worst things a franchise can do is constantly change coaches in a short amount of time. Stability and continuity are key and, until this recent report, there had never been any rumblings of issues between Ham and the Lakers players. The team has always supported Ham and had his back.
But as Amick said, winning is always the solution to these problems. For all of the issues Ham and the Lakers have had, a nice win streak will put all of these thoughts and rumors on the back-burner, but they must figure out how to get things on the right track.
There could be some roster moves on the way that could help the Lakers, but Ham must do his part, pushing the right buttons within his team and committing to a steady lineup and rotation. This is the Lakers, however, so if Ham continues to struggle, heads are likely to roll at some point.
Darvin Ham: Lakers can’t win consistently until healthy
In the mind of Ham himself, health remains the biggest issue for the Lakers. And until the team is fully healthy, Ham doesn’t believe they can win consistently.
“We can’t find any consistency until we get healthy,” Ham said. “It’s as simple as that. I mean, we got to get healthy. We got to get healthy. And once you get healthy, guys got to get back in rhythm, and we got to find a cohesive unit, a total cohesive rotation that we can go with when you’re dealing with different guys being in and out of the lineup that frequently. It’s damn near impossible to find a rhythm.
“That’s just being real. There’s no slight on anybody. We pride ourselves on making sure we don’t send our guys out there to expose themselves to any major type of injury that’s what we stand on. But having said that, we got to get guys healthy.”
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