The Los Angeles Lakers were finally looking to pick up some sustained momentum on Monday night after beating a very good Cleveland Cavaliers team on the road on Saturday. Los Angeles was unable to do that, falling to the Philadelphia 76ers in embarrassing fashion.
Darvin Ham's team lost 138-94, making it the fourth-biggest loss in franchise history. The game being buried by Monday Night Football and the return of CM Punk to Monday Night RAW (shoutout to the wrestling fan readers) was not enough, as Lakers fans certainly let their frustrations be heard.
While fans were undoubtedly upset with the team as a whole, most of the frustration was directed at Ham. Fans are getting fed up with Ham's rotation and do not think that this team is living up to its potential. Monday night's loss was the ugliest of the season, and as a result, the frustrations with Ham boiled over.
Better than trading Russell Westbrook? Ouch.
Lakers fans need to cut Darvin Ham some slack
Has Darvin Ham been perfect this season? Not at all. I would not even go as far as to say that he has been very good this season. But to say that he should be fired? That is as big of an overreaction as a fan can have at this point in the season.
What was Ham supposed to do differently in this game? Sure, someone like Taurean Prince could have gotten less playing time as he was woeful in this game (and has been all season). But that was not going to change much. The Lakers were absolutely blown out of the gym and no number of coaching changes was going to fix that.
The fact of the matter is that the Lakers were missing two of their three most important bench players in this game. Not having Jarred Vanderbilt or Rui Hachimura is huge, not to mention the fact that Cam Reddish and Gabe Vincent also didn't play in this game.
This is a banged-up rotation that was probably getting a tad overrated before the season began. It shouldn't be a surprise that a guy who was cut by his last team (Prince) or a second-year second-round pick (Max Christie) aren't fully living up to the fanbase's expectations. Sure, Christie looked great on Saturday, but Monday proved that isn't sustainable.
The early part of the season is about finding what works in the rotation. Things are going to be thrown against the wall and they are not always going to stick, especially when the rotation is down four prominent players who all will average 20 minutes per game when healthy.
It was a horrible look for Darvin Ham, there is no refuting that. But calling for his job after what he accomplished in his first season is silly.