Darvin Ham says he’ll continue to start 2 point guards for the foreseeable future

Zach Stevens
2 Min Read

When the Los Angeles Lakers made a major trade on Wednesday and essentially swapped Russell Westbrook for D’Angelo Russell at the point guard position, people wondered what their new starting backcourt would look like.

It consisted of two point guards, Russell and Dennis Schroder, in Saturday’s win over the Golden State Warriors, and head coach Darvin Ham said that will continue to be the case moving forward.

Some do not like such a starting backcourt and would prefer to see Schroder come off the bench to lead the second unit. However, starting him alongside Russell has its advantages.

For one, it gives L.A. someone who can effectively guard opposing point guards so that Russell won’t be tasked with that responsibility. Russell isn’t known as a good defender, but Schroder can get in the face of opposing ball-handlers and pressure them as they bring the ball upcourt.

In addition, it allows Russell to play off the ball more often, something he excels at. He has become a good 3-point shooter in catch-and-shoot situations, and that ability will help fortify what has been an iffy Lakers half-court offense.

Schroder is also a speed threat in the open court, and it will allow the team to continue to push the pace consistently with the starting unit while taking some of that responsibility off the shoulders of the 38-year-old LeBron James.

On Saturday, the German native was on top of his game with 26 points while attempting a whopping 11 free throws. In the Lakers’ previous game, a loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday, he had 25 points, 12 assists and zero turnovers.

Ham has gone with lots of three and even four-guard lineups this season, something which has led to criticism from Lakers fans. However, with the team’s roster changes, such lineups would at least now mean that most of those guards will be at least 6-foot-4 in height.

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Zach has always had a profound love and respect for the Lakers that has inspired him to write about the franchise. He has a great deal of admiration for LeBron James, and his overall knowledge about the NBA has made him a solid addition to the Lakers Daily staff.