Lakers welcome Darvin Ham as new "no-nonsense" head coach
Los Angeles, California - Los Angeles Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka identified Darvin Ham's "no-nonsense and hard-working approach" as key, as he was officially confirmed as the team's head coach on Friday.
A week after reports emerged of Ham's imminent appointment at Crypto.com Arena, the Lakers officially welcomed their new coach.
Ham previously worked under Mike Brown as an assistant on the Lakers between 2011 and 2013, and he returns to the team from the Milwaukee Bucks.
The 48-year-old – whose only previous head coaching job was with the New Mexico Thunderbirds, now the Cleveland Charge – followed Mike Budenholzer from the Atlanta Hawks to Milwaukee in 2018.
He was part of the staff that helped the Bucks to win their second NBA championship in 2021, adding to a sole success as a player on the 2004 Detroit Pistons.
Now, Ham will be leading the Lakers, looking to improve on a hugely underwhelming season in which the team failed to qualify for the playoffs.
The Lakers fired their head coach of two years, Frank Vogel, in April.
Darvin Ham is the Lakers' new man of the hour
James was enthused by reports of Ham's arrival, though, and Pelinka is also looking forward to seeing his latest hire get to work.
"When someone begins his NBA coaching career at the G League level and goes all the way through playing an integral role on the front bench of an NBA championship team, it really speaks to a certain strength of character," Pelinka said.
"Our players and fans will immediately identify with Darvin's no-nonsense and hard-working approach, which we feel will bring toughness and a competitive edge to all we do.
"When you add that to Darvin's sophisticated grasp of in-game strategy and deep knowledge of the game of basketball, we have the ideal coach for this next chapter in Lakers history.
"We could not be more honored and proud to name Darvin Ham as our new head coach."
Ham is set to meet the media for the first time as Lakers coach on Monday, when potential offseason trades for Westbrook and his significant salary are sure to be a topic of discussion.
Cover photo: Collage: KEVORK DJANSEZIAN & JARED C. TILTON / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / GETTY IMAGES VIA AFP