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Darvin Ham Hints At LeBrons’ 29 Minutes In Opening Match

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Darvin Ham Hints At LeBrons' 29 Minutes In Opening Match

LeBron James’ 29 minutes fit the Lakers’ schedule, according to Darvin Ham.

LeBron James played just 29 minutes in the Los Angeles Lakers’ 119-107 loss to the Denver Nuggets on Tuesday to begin his 21st season. The 38-year-old superstar’s reduced workload is a part of the Lakers’ long-term strategy, according to head coach Darvin Ham.

“It’s easy with him to get caught up in the emotion of the game and you tend to forget you want to play these long stretches, but in order for him to be as effective as possible, we have to be mindful of the minute output and how long his stretches are,” Ham stated.

With 19,842 fans in attendance at Ball Arena to celebrate the first ring night in team history, the Nuggets led by as much as 18 points early in the first quarter.

James was done for the night by the time the crowd began screaming, “Who’s your daddy?” in the last minute, mocking the Lakers with a 115-103 deficit.

James finished tied for the team lead with eight rebounds and led Los Angeles in scoring with 21 points on 10-for-16 shooting. With five assists and no turnovers, he finished with the best plus-minus of any Lakers starter at plus-7.

“Listen, I want to be on the floor all the time. particularly when you have the chance to win a game or you believe you can have an influence,” James remarked following the match. “But this is the system in place and I’m going to follow it.”

Upon being questioned about whether he would need to modify his strategy due to his reduced playing time each night, James expressed his confidence in his ability to still have an impact on the game even with the extra rest.

James remarked, “Aside from the fact that we didn’t win, I think I was productive for myself based on my performance and the things I accomplished on my own during that time.” In my opinion, yes. I was, after all, a plus-7 for the match. No mishandles. Above all, I enjoy that there are no turnovers.”

James finished the 2017–18 season with the second-highest amount of minutes played (35.5) in his five seasons with the Lakers. However, he missed 27 games due to a right foot ailment.

Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka stated during the team’s media day in Los Angeles earlier this month that the group “partnered” with James to devise a strategy to “get him all the way to the end” of this campaign.

Mike Mancias, James’s longtime athletic trainer, was advised in the decision, according to Ham. James expressed that he was “not surprised or upset” by the way the Nuggets used his minutes.

Although Ham stated that the amount may change over time, the squad is starting the season with the intention of keeping James in the 28–30 minute range.

“It’s going to be a day-by-day process, gauging how he’s feeling, get communication from him, our training staff, our medical staff,” Ham stated.

Given James’ new role, it will be even more crucial for Los Angeles to receive effective play from big man Anthony Davis, 30,.

In the first half against Denver, Davis scored 17 points for Los Angeles on 6-of-11 shooting, but he was scoreless in the second half (0 for 6 from the field).

Davis clarified, “They started double-teaming.” “They attempted to pack the paint. I failed to make a few simple layups near the hoop and small jumpers. Just trying to execute the play correctly, let our men take it. Take it out on me if I’m doubled. Gabe [Vincent] and Rui [Hachimura] both had open 3. All they did was not fall. However, I need to film it more.”

In his Laker debut, Vincent finished with six points on 3-for-8 shooting. He noted that Davis must be involved, but added that in order to maximise the offence as a whole, Los Angeles also needs every player to be seeking for his shot.

“I think we’re going to continue to try to get him involved,” Vincent stated. “But it’s crucial that everyone maintains their aggression. I believe that we were observed staring and standing motionless far too often. I believe that everyone needs to play the game and be aggressive. We’ll find him and keep looking for ways to be aggressive and so on, and then we’ll move forward.”

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