Former UCLA Bruins Head Coach, Ben Howland, is one of only three active college coaches to take their team to three consecutive Final Four appearances. His rigid hard-nosed style was a key factor to his teams’ successes. He developed such NBA All-Stars during his tenure as Russell Westbrook, Kevin Love, and Jrue Holiday.
Another Howland product is Los Angeles Lakers guard Jordan Farmar. Farmar was originally drafted in 2006 with hopes of being the point guard of the future. But the emotional return of the rock-steady Derek Fisher led Farmar to bolt for New Jersey in the summer of 2010. He spent last season in Turkey, and then re-signed with Los Angeles this off-season after his contract was bought out.
The Lakers surrendered 101 points in the 2012-2013 season; ninth worst in the NBA. They were particularly friendly to point guards who routinely beat the Lakers’ slower backcourt down the lane for lay-ups. Jordan Farmar will provide toughness and much needed youth at the guard position. He also has the credibility in the locker room from winning back-to-back NBA titles, and has been a part of a winning tradition since his days at Taft High.
Farmar and Kobe Bryant not only share winning titles together, but they both have fathers who were professional athletes. Jordan’s father, Damon Farmar, spent eight years time in the MLB farm system. Not many of Bryant’s peers share his unique childhood story. Having trouble relating to others contributed heavily to his earlier struggles to trust teammates. Farmar is someone he can trust, but can relate to on a different plain.
With projected starter Steve Nash turning 40 in February, Jordan Farmar can again be the Lakers point guard of the future.