The Los Angeles Lakers hired Darvin Ham as their new head coach and he will have to find a solution to the Russell Westbrook issue. The Lakers didn’t make a move to trade Westbrook and it seems like the veteran will spend some time in Los Angeles. Russ wasn’t a good fit for the Lakers last season and his teammates were disappointed. Rob Pelinka didn’t have much options when it comes to picking a good trade partner. NBA teams wanted Russ and first-round picks. It was a strong “no” for the purple and gold.
Outside noise doesn’t bother the new Lakers head coach. Ham has nothing but words of praise for the veteran. Moreover, Russ was the only player to attend Ham’s press conference. Showing praise for his new head coach? Absolutely.
Darvin Ham respects Russell Westbrook
Ham had an interview with Marc J. Spears of Andscape. He made similar comments about Broddie.
“Counted out prematurely. Counted out. Prematurely. I’ve had some great interactions with Russ, in person, over dinner, over the phone, over text messages. I love Russell Westbrook, man. Just his mentality, his approach. Just to see him, a guy of that magnitude and everything he’s done in the league to get hated on. But being me, I got a wholehearted plan, a clear plan on how I’m going to use him. I showed it to him, sat down, brought stuff up for him. I think he’s going to flourish. We ain’t going to try to curtail his energy. We’re just going to diversify it, redirect it.”
How will the Lakers handle Russ’ situation? Ham has great plans for his veteran. Will Russ get a starting role with the team this time?
“Yes, indeed. It’s just the way we’re going to play and the type of people that’s going to be out there on the floor, that’s the biggest thing,” Ham said.
It may be too soon to make a prediction. Westbrook is a talented guy but he is not a healthy fit for the Lakers. Maybe Ham will find better use for his experience.