Lakers

Lakers News: Showtime Great Praises Darvin Ham Hire

It’s always good when a new head coach is described as a “workaholic!”

Former Showtime Lakers starting shooting guard Byron Scott recently spoke with Bally Sports’ Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson while on a Bovada Sports segment at TJ Kidd’s Celebrity basketball game. Their conversation turned to the subject of L.A.’s latest head coach, Darvin Ham.

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Scott, 61, also served as the team’s head coach from 2014-2016. He voiced his optimism about the longtime NBA assistant coach and former eight-year NBA role player.

Check out his full thoughts below:

“You know what? The only thing that I know about Darvin is that he’s a hard-nosed tough kid. I played against him way back in the day; I coached against him when he was one of the assistant coaches, you know? So I know that he’s a workaholic, he’s a hard working kid; he’s tough, he’s defensive minded — which this team DEFINITELY has to get back to, but I love the acquisition of picking Darvin Ham as head coach and I just wish the best for him.” 

Certainly this is an encouraging quote. A dogged work ethic and an interest in team defense are always exciting attributes in a new head coach.

The Lakers brought Ham, hardly a kid at 49, into the fold after axing former head coach Frank Vogel, who won a title during his first season with the club in 2019-20. After starting out as a Lakers assistant from 2011-13, Ham latched on to the staff of head coach Mike Budenholzer, first with the Atlanta Hawks and subsequently with the Bucks. Milwaukee won it all in 2021.

Aside from Anthony Davis, LeBron James, Austin Reaves, Wenyen Gabriel, and potentially Russell Westbrook (but, you know, probably not), Ham will be coaching a very different team than the decrepit, geezer-heavy club that Vogel was handed last season. Though Kendrick Nunn signed on with the Lakers last year, a lingered bone bruise kept him sidelined all season, so we’re going to count him as a new addition, too.

Though bereft of a lot of shooting, this new-look Lakers team boasts plenty of young, athletic role players with perhaps some untapped upside. In Milwaukee, Ham was known for his player development abilities, with a focus (as Scott mentioned) on the defensive side of the ball.

Scott, a 6’3″ shooting guard, was drafted out of Arizona State by Jerry West and the rest of the Lakers’ front office brain trust in 1983. He would go on to play ten seasons in L.A., winning three titles while starting alongside Lakers luminaries Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson and James Worthy. Through 1,073 regular season contests across 14 years of NBA service, Scott posted averages of 14.1 points, 2.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 1.1 steals a night, along with .482/.370/.833 shooting splits.

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