1. Rui Hachimura
Rui Hachimura‘s tenure with the Los Angeles Lakers has been incredibly interesting thus far. There was a lot of excitement around what he could bring to the rotation when he was first acquired but that was then drowned out by the team’s bigger deadline moves.
On the court, Hachimura has been just as up and down. There have been games where his scoring presence is really felt off the bench and you can see why the Lakers sold themselves on trading for him.
In other games, Hachimura all but disappears and does not have any sort of impact on the outcome. Even worse, it appears that the Lakers don’t believe in Hachimura, both in how much he plays and the sets that are run on offense.
The longer Hachimura has been in LA the less and less the Lakers have seemingly relied on his offensive game. He is averaging a career-low in field goal attempts per 36 minutes with a career-low usage rate.
Darvin Ham did not even play Hachimura in LeBron James’ return to the court on Sunday. He was not hurt, either. He simply was handed a DNP in favor of Troy Brown Jr. In his six games prior he was averaging 16.6 minutes per game. That is a near 25% decrease from the 24.4 minutes per game he was averaging in his first 20 games in LA.
Hachimura is a restricted free agent this summer and the team is not going to pay up for someone who the coach seemingly does not believe in.