Darvin Ham is big fan of Gabe Vincent and was expecting him to be big piece of Lakers puzzle

Jesse Cinquini
3 Min Read
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Darvin Ham is a big fan of guard Gabe Vincent and apparently sees himself in the young guard.

“And look, not having Gabe Vincent — and I know from conversations that Ham was definitely a big fan of Gabe Vincent and saw some of himself in Gabe Vincent and was expecting that to be a big piece of this puzzle,” Jake Fischer said. “So not having him does hurt, and from an overall assets standpoint and to think about how the Lakers can get out of this mess, not having the player you signed to a three-year, mid-level hurts.”

The 27-year-old agreed to a three-year deal with Los Angeles in the 2023 offseason after playing productive basketball with the Miami Heat during their run to the NBA Finals a season ago.

He averaged 10-plus points per game in each of Miami’s four playoff series last season. Vincent arguably played his best basketball of the 2023 playoffs in the Eastern Conference Finals against Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum and the Boston Celtics, as he averaged 15.8 points per game while shooting 48.5 percent from the field and 51.6 percent from behind the 3-point line.

Vincent has suited up in just five games with the Lakers so far during the 2023-24 regular season due to a knee injury. He is averaging 5.4 points, 1.0 rebound and 3.0 assists per game in his first season with the franchise.

His most recent appearance came in Los Angeles’ matchup against the Chicago Bulls back on Dec. 20, when he played 14 minutes and finished with three points, one rebound and three assists while shooting 1-of-4 from the field and 1-of-3 from 3-point range.

Prior to seeing the court against the Bulls last month, Vincent hadn’t played in a regular-season game for the Lakers since Oct. 30, when he dropped nine points and two assists in a three-point win for Los Angeles.

The Lakers could have used Vincent’s 3-point prowess in their most recent game against the Memphis Grizzlies on Jan. 5. Los Angeles managed to convert just 10-of-28 3-point shots as a team, which equates to a 35.7 percent clip. The Grizzlies, meanwhile, were hot from behind the line, seeing as how they knocked down 51.1 percent of their 3-point looks.

Los Angeles will try to avoid picking up its fifth loss in a row when it hosts the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday night. The Clippers have been playing much better basketball than the Lakers over the past few weeks, as the former boasts an 8-2 record over their last 10 games while the latter owns a 2-8 record over the same span.

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Jesse is a sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA. He has worked as a staff writer covering the Lakers’ dreaded rivals, the Boston Celtics, for SB Nation. He has also covered the New York Knicks for The Knicks Wall.