The Los Angeles Lakers opened the 2023-24 season on the road against the Denver Nuggets. This was the perfect matchup for the NBA to open the season as these two teams are legitimate title contenders and have hatched a contentious rivalry.
Lakers fans were extremely excited for this game not just because of the matchup but because of how good the team looked in the preseason. This is one of the deepest Lakers rosters in franchise history and it looked the part during the preseason.
While fans were excited for the start of the season, it took less than one full game to start questioning head coach Darvin Ham. One of the players whom Lakers fans were most excited about was second-year guard Max Christie, who has not been part of the rotation against the Nuggets.
Instead, the backup two-guard spot went to Cam Reddish, who missed several preseason games with an injury and did not look great in the chances he did get in the preseason.
Lakers fans are up in arms over Darvin Ham’s controversial Max Christie decision
Lakers fans being upset over this decision is certainly justifiable. All summer long fans were being told that Christie was ready to break out in his second season. His play in the Summer League and the preseason seemingly proved that true. The hype was not unwarranted.
However, fans need to look at the bigger picture. There are 81 more games in the season. There is plenty of time for the rotation to shake itself out and when the dust settles, the better player will get chances.
Plus, fans were probably overhyping Christie a bit too much when he has not proven anything in the actual NBA. This was very similar to Talen Horton-Tucker. THT looked fantastic in the summer league and preseason, making a believer out of just about every Lakers fan. But when he actually played, he wasn’t ready.
It isn’t crazy to think that Reddish isn’t ready yet in only his second year in the league. After all, Christie is still only 20 years old and was taken in the second round of the 2022 NBA Draft. It isn’t like he was a marquee draft prospect.
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