Manage episode 346010212 series 1657213
Wednesday's thrilling overtime win over New Orleans felt like a change of pace for the Lakers not just because they won - but because it spared everyone some genuine heartbreak and the Lakers were actually the beneficiary of some good fortune (namely two critical missed free throws). Plus, it gave everyone indelible moment, from Matt Ryan drilling a game-tying 3-pointer to Austin Reaves making the clutch pass to get it to him to Darvin Ham drawing up the play to begin with. It's the sort of thing that can help change the atmosphere around a team that has been struggling to find sustained reasons for optimism.
Wednesday, the Lakers managed to win without a great game from LeBron James. They overcame some late adversity. They got contributions from Lonnie Walker IV (28 points) and Troy Brown (15 points, 10 rebounds), along with Ryan (11 points). Russell Westbrook continues to be impactful off the bench, contributing a first half that was probably his best run as a Laker. Was it quite as good in the second? No, but that's ok! Ham clearly doesn't feel obligated to play him late come hell or high water.
It's all part of a rapidly evolving rotation, one that doesn't seem to include Kendrick Nunn, that is shrinking floor time for Patrick Beverley, and will soon welcome Dennis Schröder back into the mix. If the Lakers can keep themselves in striking distance of the playoff ladder, how Ham continues to shape a lineup is going to be fascinating to watch.
HOSTS: Andy and Brian Kamenetzky
SEGMENT 1: Matt Ryan!!!
SEGMENT 2: Russell Westbrook had another good game, and we learned a ton about how Ham sees his role going forward.
SEGMENT 3: Ham's rotation is evolving, and fast.
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Andy and Brian Kamenetzky bring you a daily look into the Los Angeles Lakers and the NBA. The Kamenetzkys have covered the Lakers since 2005 for a variety of outlets including the LA Times, ESPN and The Athletic, with a unique style combining traditional journalism, informal commentary and offbeat humor.
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