Milwaukee Bucks assistant coach Darvin Ham has accepted an offer to be the Los Angeles Lakers’ next head coach, according to an anonymous source who spoke with the Associated Press.
Ham was drafted in 1996 and played eight years in the NBA, including a championship with the 2004 Detroit Pistons.
He entered coaching as an assistant in the NBA G League in 2008 before joining the Lakers as an assistant from 2011-to 2013.
Ham next worked with the Hawks from 2013-to 2018 and finally joined the Bucks in 2018 and was part of their championship run last year.
The 48-year-old Ham takes over for former head coach Frank Vogel, who led the Lakers to the 2019-2020 title before having two disappointing seasons.
LA lost to the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the 2020-21 playoffs and failed to qualify for postseason play this year with a 33-49 record.
Ham will become the 15th Black coach in the NBA.
LeBron James tweeted his endorsement for Ham’s hiring.
So damn EXCITED!!!!!!!! Congrats and welcome Coach DHam!! 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 #LakeShow💜💛
— LeBron James (@KingJames) May 28, 2022
The Bucks Giannis Antetokounmpo expressed his well-wishes for Ham to ESPN. “I’m so happy for him. He’s the right fit for them. He keeps it real with you. No BS at all. It’s about damn time. He deserves it more than anyone.”
Now, the first-year head coach will have to figure out how to make the disastrous Russell Westbrook experiment work.
Odds had the Lakers as title contenders before the start of the season, but their aging roster’s shortcomings and Westbrook’s ill fit became apparent quickly, leading to one of if not the most disappointing season for Laker Nation ever.
James and Anthony Davis cited injuries and a lack of time together on the court as the main reason for the team’s failure.
During LA’s interviewing process, reports said the team was asking candidates how they would use Westbrook, implying that the 33-year-old guard will be staying put in Tinseltown.