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Darvin Ham Expected to Join Lakers Coaching Staff
In the midst of a greedy NBA Lockout that is bent on consuming the entire season, the Los Angeles Lakers are still hard at work preparing for something that may never happen.
Despite a busy offseason that has already involved the signings of assistant coaches John Kuester, Chuck Person, Ettore Mesina and Quin Synder, the coaching carousel keeps spinning. Head coach Mike Brown has decided to add another head to his coaching staff in the form of Darvin Ham. Although nothing is official, Ham is expected to be added in the near future as a Lakers assistant.
"We've interviewed and talked to him," Lakers' team spokesman John Black said of Ham. "But he's on a small, small list of assistant coaches Coach Brown is considering."
Name doesn't ring a bell? Well let me fill you in.
A former NBA player and D-League coach, Ham has been around the block in the NBA. After attending Texas Tech, he went undrafted in the 1996 NBA Draft and was subsequently signed to the Denver Nuggets. He then became an NBA journeyman, bouncing around between eight different teams between the years of 1996 and 2007. Included in his basketball tour were two international trips, one to Spain and one to the Philippines.
Ham's final NBA stint came with the Dallas Mavericks during the 2007 preseason. His talents weren't enough, though, as he was waived before the regular season began. He was then drafted third overall in the 2007 NBA D-League Draft by the Albuquerque Thunderbirds, a then-affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers. In 2008, he was traded to the Austin Toros right before his playing days came to an end.
Once he had hung up his sneakers, he began coaching. His first stint as a coach came with the Thunderbirds, where he started as an assistant coach before becoming the head coach in 2010. In his first and only season as the team's head honcho, he led them to a 20-30 record.
His travels from one corner of the basketball world to another weren't what made his name recognizable around the NBA community, though. The pride and joy of his basketball career came in 1996 when he was pictured on the cover of Sports Illustrated. In the shot, he was seen tearing down the backboard, glass shattering behind him, in a game against the North Carolina Tar Heels.
Lakers' star Kobe Bryant(notes) and Ham also competed against each other during the 1997 Slam Dunk Contest, but that connection doesn't appear to have much influence in this latest addition to the Lakers family.
His travels seem to have landed him in Los Angeles, where he will hopefully have a chance to help the Lakers turn in a successful 2011-2012 season.
Gil Alcaraz IV is a Los Angeles native who was born into a family of diehard Lakers fans. For more Lakers coverage, follow him on Twitter @GilAlcarazIV.
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