New Lakers coach Darvin Ham declared his “love’ for the current roster during halftime of the team’s 104-84 summer league loss to the Suns, Dave McMenamin of ESPN writes. Rumors persist that Kyrie Irving‘s most likely destination if he’s traded is Los Angeles.
“We love everyone on our roster,” Ham said. “And until you’re not on our roster, you’re ours and we’re going to try to get better with the group that we have. That’s just the bottom line of it. I don’t know a player that’s come through this league in my 26 years that hasn’t had their name part of a trade rumor a time or two.”
We have more on the Lakers:
- Russell Westbrook offered some ball-handling advice to rookie Scotty Pippen Jr., who signed a two-way contract . Pippen had a team-high 19 points but also five turnovers. “He gave me some pointers and I ended up using them,” Pippen said.
- Westbrook and LeBron James didn’t exactly act like bosom buddies while watching the game, Kyle Goon of the Orange County Register notes. They sat in opposite corners of the Thomas & Mack Center and made no public acknowledgment of one another before Westbrook left the exhibition at halftime.
- GM Rob Pelinka foreshadowed at least one big move to come while speaking on the NBA TV broadcast, Goon relays. “We’re not done,” Pelinka said. “We still have more work to do.” The Lakers have an open roster spot.
- The Lakers tried in vain to engineer a multi-player trade with the Pacers, McMenamin said on ESPN (video link). McMenamin said “those talks basically went nowhere” because the Lakers’ offer wasn’t strong enough. McMenamin didn’t elaborate on what players were discussed, though it’s fair to speculate they might have either been targeting Myles Turner or Buddy Hield, who nearly got dealt to the Lakers last offseason.
- In a wide ranging interview with Andscape’s Marc J. Spears, Ham hinted that Anthony Davis is the key to the team’s success. “With AD, I would say he’s the biggest factor,” Ham said. “I’m looking forward to him having a huge year this year. I know the way we’re going to play is going to benefit him. The way I’m going to take care of him, make sure we take care of him, it’s going to benefit him.”