Lockers hire Darwin Hamm, check multiple boxes with first year head coach

After a month and a half of searching, The Lockers Darwin Hamm was hired as their next head coach on Friday afternoon, several sources confirmed. Athletes.

The 48-year-old Hamm checked almost every box during the lockers’ training search: he has the right connections, he has a championship heritage, he has coached many big stars (especially Kobe Bryant and Giannis Antetocouncombo), He is a former player, he has a strong, commanding personality, he is loved by the players and he is a respected tactician of the respectable Bobovich / Budenholzer training tree.

In an otherwise sluggish training market, Ham turns the first year head coach’s profile into a successful one from day 1.

After the sacking of former head coach Frank Vogel on April 11, Rob appeared to be a clear choice for the Lockers vacancy after Rob Belinga, vice president and general manager of basketball operations, said the team was looking for a candidate with a high level of communication skills.

Ham is known as an attractive communicator who holds players accountable and sets strong boundaries. Although his expertise was player development – a skill that could certainly help the Lakers’ internal progress – he was a defensive-minded tactician who played a significant role in developing the Bucks Championship defensive program.

According to sources, Ham agreed to a four-year contract with the Lakers. He has been an assistant coach for 11 seasons, starting with Mike Brown’s Lakers in 2011, before spending the last nine years. Atlanta And Milwaukee as Principal Assistant under Mike Budenholzer. Ham is a two-time champion, winning both games (with Detroit Pistons In 2003-04) and as an assistant coach (with Milwaukee Bucks In 2020-21).

Three years later, with the exception of their last training quest, the Lakers nominated the best candidate available. Ham Took second place Inside Athletes‘S Training Ranking – The Best Option in the Market (No. 1 Utah Jazz Head coach Queen Snyder, affiliated with the Lakers but not officially available).

The only reason the home rent came as a slight surprise was the history of the lockers. They traditionally wanted the best coaching names: Phil Jackson, Rudy Domjanovich, Mike D’Antoni and Tyrone Lou (the leading candidate before they hired Vogel).

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But without a clear candidate like that, they had two options: offer a rehearsal or an offer to an assistant coach.

The Lockers decided to go out of their comfort zone and appoint a first-year head coach with substantial potential (the last first-year head coach of the Lockers, Luke Walton, played nine seasons in Los Angeles and had very strong relationships with the company). After a decade of unrest since Jackson’s departure, Ham has a chance to stabilize the Lakers coaching position.

Ham impressed the Lakers, knocking out more experienced candidates Terry Stots and Kenny Atkinson. Sources say the Lakers made the decision about Ham after interviewing Stokes on Tuesday and Ham on Thursday. Ham is the 28th Lockers coach in franchise history and the sixth coach in the last 11 years.

It is unknown at this time what he will do after leaving the post. Sports – The league has attracted a lot of interest from coaches who are already under contract, such as Nick Nurse, Quinn Snyder and Doc Rivers. Those names would have hardly followed the work of lockers over the years and / or if the circumstances were different.

In addition to playing a key role in Antetokounmpo’s rise to superstardom, Ham earned Bryant’s respect and developed relationships with Pav Casol. Al Harford, Chris Middleton, Brooke Lopez, Dwight Howard And Steve Nash.

The only real impact against him is that he has no experience as head coach. He has been a runner-up to several head coach positions in recent years and is considered strong Charlotte Hornets Vacancy. It was only after a while that he got the chance.

Ham follows in the footsteps of recent head coaches who cut their teeth in the G League: Nurse, Snyder, Taylor Jenkins and Chris Finch. All four coaches quickly won NBA Condition.

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However, the difference between Ham and those four names is that Saginaw, Mich., A native, played a tough role player in eight NBA seasons from 1996 to 2005. Denver, Indiana, Washington, Milwaukee, Atlanta and Detroit. It gives him instant cassette with players.

As Ime Utoka and Willie Green have shown this season, and as Steve Kerr, Tyrone Lou and the nurse have shown in recent years, first-year head coaches can make a significant impact by stepping in (and in the case of the latter three, winning the championship as coaches. Newcomers).

According to ESPN, Ham and Lockers will bring together a staff with leadership training experience. Vocal’s assistant coaching staff conducted pre-draft exercises for the team, but it is unclear how many – if any – will be on Ham’s staff.

Following the Lakers’ disastrous 33-49 season, they finished 11th in the West and missed the play-offs, leaving the responsibility of making the Lakers rivals again to Hamid. This is undoubtedly a lofty task: LeBron James Turns 38 in December Anthony Davis Having suffered a number of serious injuries over the past two seasons, Westbrook is well suited to join his two-star squad, and to please things, the Lockers do not have many tools to recreate their shallow list.

The future of Westbrook in Los Angeles is not clear. Since the Lockers do not want to combine first-round selection to move him, the chances of him making a comeback are increasing, and some in the organization believe that a new coach with Westbrook, James and Davis could enhance the fit better. If the Lockers retain him, he will have to sell the Ham Lockers on how to use the 14-year-old star point guard next season.

Ham, who has become very popular among Laker fans in recent weeks, has received significant support from many Lakers figures, including tweets from James (Ham supporter), the Lakers legend and former head of basketball operations Magic Johnson (who advised on the process). ) And the free agent section soon Kent Bassmore.

Johnson has been advising Governor Jenny Bus and the front office during their training search. Said Athletes On Monday, he wanted a former player to be hired as the Lakers’ next coach.

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“With the exception of Eric Spolstra, most likely the other three in the final four are former players,” Johnson said. “So, I’m paying homage to these young ex-players right now and I think it says a lot about what they have done before. I’m not saying it has to be an ex-player, but I want to see what happens.

“But the most important thing to me is accountability. They should be responsible for everyone from one to 15 years old. We have shied away from accountability. Guys don’t even talk about it this season. It’s always someone’s fault. I hated it. Never said, ‘Hey, I played badly. Hey, it’s on me. ‘ So Trent is an ex-player whether he is an ex-player or not. But if not, everyone needs a coach who is responsible. And that’s what I want to see. “

Preparing for the June 23 NBA draft, Westbrook is figuring out what the next order of the lockers business will do, for which they will try to buy a second round pick, and then start the free agency on June 30th.

But the most important part of the Lockers of the season has been officially resolved. Ham is capable of weaving a subtle needle between the lockers’ present and future, away from their regular coaches. Their important summer is off to an interesting start.

(Photo: David Dove via Getty Images / NBAE)

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